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Sample records for huntington disease patients

  1. Huntington\\'s disease: Genetic heterogeneity in black African patients

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Objective. Huntington's disease (HD) has been reported to occur rarely in black patients. A new genetic variant– Huntington's disease-like 2 (HDL2) – occurring more frequently in blacks, has recently been described. The absence of an expanded trinucleotide repeat at the chromosome 4 HD locus was previously regarded ...

  2. Huntington's Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huntington's disease (HD) is an inherited disease that causes certain nerve cells in the brain to waste ... express emotions. If one of your parents has Huntington's disease, you have a 50 percent chance of ...

  3. Huntington's disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hjermind, Lena Elisabeth; Law, Ian; Jønch, Aia

    2011-01-01

    In this open-label pilot study, the authors evaluated the effect of memantine on the distribution of brain glucose metabolism in four Huntington's disease (HD) patients as determined by serial 18-fluoro-deoxyglucose [F(18)]FDG-PET scans over a period of 3-4 months (90-129 days, with one patient...

  4. Clinical and genetic data of Huntington disease in Moroccan patients

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Background: Huntington's disease (HD) occurs worldwide with prevalence varying from 0.1 to 10 /100,000 depending of the ethnic origin. Since no data is available in the Maghreb population, the aim of this study is to describe clinical and genetic characteristics of Huntington patients of Moroccan origin. Methods: Clinical ...

  5. Huntington's Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Division of Neuroscience Director, NIH BRAIN Initiative® Health Scientist Administrator Channels Synapses Circuits Cluster Scientific Director, Division of Intramural Research Featured Director's Message menu search Enter Search Term Submit Search Huntington's Disease Information ...

  6. Chronic subdural haematoma in patients with Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pechlivanis, I; Andrich, J; Scholz, M; Harders, A; Saft, C; Schmieder, K

    2006-10-01

    We studied the frequency of patients who had chronic subdural haematomas (CSDH) and Huntington's disease (HD) in a 1-year study period. In our department a total of 58 patients with CSDH were treated. Four patients (6.9% of them) had HD. Surgical evacuation of the haematoma was performed in all four cases with the use of a twist drill trepanation without a drainage system.

  7. Clinical characterization of dystonia in adult patients with Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van de Zande, N A; Massey, T H; McLauchlan, D; Pryce Roberts, A; Zutt, R; Wardle, M; Payne, G C; Clenaghan, C; Tijssen, M A J; Rosser, A E; Peall, K J

    2017-09-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is an autosomal dominant, neurodegenerative movement disorder, typically characterized by chorea. Dystonia is also recognized as part of the HD motor phenotype, although little work detailing its prevalence, distribution, severity and impact on functional capacity has been published to date. Patients (>18 years of age) were recruited from the Cardiff (UK) HD clinic, each undergoing a standardized videotaped clinical examination and series of functional assessment questionnaires (Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale, Burke-Fahn-Marsden Dystonia Rating Scale and modified version of the Toronto Western Spasmodic Torticollis Rating Scale). The presence and severity of dystonia were scored by four independent neurologists using the Burke-Fahn-Marsden Dystonia Rating Scale and Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale. Statistical analysis included Fisher's exact test, Wilcoxon test, anova and calculation of correlation coefficients where appropriate. Forty-eight patients [91% (48/53)] demonstrated evidence of dystonia, with the highest prevalence in the left upper limb (n = 44, 83%), right upper limb most severely affected and eyes least affected. Statistically significant positive correlations (P disease stage and motor disease duration. Deterioration in functional capacity also correlated with increasing dystonia severity. No significant relationship was observed with age at motor symptom onset or CAG repeat length. We report a high prevalence of dystonia in adult patients with HD, with worsening dystonia severity with increasing HD disease stage and motor disease duration. The recognition and management of dystonic symptoms in routine clinical practice will aid overall symptomatic treatment and functional improvement. © 2017 EAN.

  8. The Role of the Occupational Therapist in the Treatment of Patients with Huntington's Disease

    OpenAIRE

    Sýkorová, Jitka

    2016-01-01

    The Role of the Occupational Therapist in the Treatment of Patients with Huntington's Disease Abstract: This thesis is focused on the possible potential of occupational therapy in patients with Huntington's disease, a neurodegenerative brain disease. Currently, Huntington's disease is incurable, but there are some therapeutic methods and approaches which have positive influence on a progress of the disease. Also, early intervention of occupational therapy is needed and the occupational therap...

  9. Clinical and genetic data of Huntington disease in Moroccan patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bouhouche, Ahmed; Regragui, Wafaa; Lamghari, Hind; Khaldi, Khadija; Birouk, Nazha; Lytim, Safaa; Bellamine, Soufiane; Kriouile, Yamna; Bouslam, Naima; Haddou, El Hachmia Ait Ben; Faris, Mustapha Alaoui; Benomar, Ali; Yahyaoui, Mohamed

    2015-12-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) occurs worldwide with prevalence varying from 0.1 to 10/100,000 depending of the ethnic origin. Since no data is available in the Maghreb population, the aim of this study is to describe clinical and genetic characteristics of Huntington patients of Moroccan origin. Clinical and genetics data of 21 consecutive patients recruited from 2009 to 2014 from the outpatient clinic of six medical centers were analyzed. Statistical analysis was performed using descriptive statistics. Twenty one patients from 17 families were diagnosed positive for the IT15 gene CAG expansion. Clinical symptoms were predominantly motor (19/21). Twelve patients had psychiatric and behavioral disorders, and 11 patients had cognitive disorders essentially of memory impairment. Analysis of genetic results showed that 5 patients had reduced penetrant (RP) alleles and 16 had fully penetrant (FP) alleles. The mean CAG repeat length in patients with RP alleles was 38.4 ± 0.54, and 45.37 ± 8.30 in FP alleles. The age of onset and the size of the CAG repeat length showed significant inverse correlation (p <0.001, r = -0.754). Clinical and genetic data of Moroccan patients are similar to those of Caucasian populations previously reported in the literature.

  10. Impact of Huntington's across the entire disease spectrum: the phases and stages of disease from the patient perspective

    OpenAIRE

    Ho, Aileen K.; Hocaoglu, M B

    2011-01-01

    Ho AK, Hocaoglu MB for the European Huntington's Disease Network Quality of Life Working Group. Impact of Huntington disease across the entire disease spectrum: the phases and stages of disease from the patient perspective. Although Huntington's disease (HD) is a neurodegenerative disease characterized by motor, cognitive and behavioural disturbances, there has been little empirical data examining what patients are most concerned about throughout the different stages of disease, which can spa...

  11. Neurophysiological study of facial chorea in patients with Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz, Esteban; Cervera, Alvaro; Valls-Solé, Josep

    2003-07-01

    Choreic movements of patients with Huntington's disease (HD) may result from an abnormal control of sensory inputs. In order to further examine the pathophysiology of facial choreic movements (FCM), we carried out a neurophysiological study, including prepulse inhibition of the blink reflex (BR), in HD patients with and without FCM. The study was conducted in 20 genetically proven HD patients with Unified Huntington Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS) scores of FCM ranging between 0 and 3, and in 12 age-matched healthy volunteers who served as control subjects. We counted the number of spontaneous blinks, recorded the electromyographic activity underlying FCM, and analyzed latency, amplitude, and duration of the BR responses to electrical and auditory stimuli. Prepulse inhibition was studied by comparing the responses to test trials with those to control trials. In control trials BRs were obtained to either a single supraorbital nerve electrical stimulus (EBR) or to a 90dB auditory stimulus (ABR). In test trials, the same stimuli were preceded by the prepulse, which was either a weak acoustic tone or a weak electrical stimulus to the third finger, delivered 30-150 ms before. Spontaneous blinking rate was abnormally low in 3 patients, and abnormally high in 9 patients. Mean duration of the BR was longer in patients than in control subjects. In prepulse trials, the percentage inhibition of the BR was abnormally reduced in 15 patients to at least one sensory modality, and significantly correlated with the score of FCM. Our results suggest that the severity of FCM in patients with HD might be an expression of a disturbance in motor control partly related to an abnormal processing of sensory inputs. Such abnormality involves circuits used in prepulse inhibition of the BR.

  12. The Huntington's Disease Dysphagia Scale.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heemskerk, Anne-Wil; Verbist, Berit M; Marinus, Johan; Heijnen, Bas; Sjögren, Elisabeth V; Roos, Raymund A C

    2014-09-01

    Little is known about the swallowing disturbances of patients with Huntington's disease; therefore, we developed the Huntington's Disease Dysphagia Scale. The scale was developed in four stages: (1) item generation, (2) comprehension testing, (3) evaluation of reliability, (4) item reduction and validity testing. The questionnaire was presented twice to 50 Huntington's disease patients and their caregivers. The Kruskal-Wallis test was used to evaluate whether the severity of swallowing difficulties increased with advancing disease. Pearson's correlation coefficient was used to examine the construct validity with the Swallowing Disturbance Questionnaire. The final version contained 11 items with five response options and exhibited a Cronbach's alpha coefficient of 0.728. The severity of swallowing difficulties was significantly higher in more advanced Huntington's disease. The correlation with the Swallowing Disturbance Questionnaire was 0.734. We developed a valid and reliable 11-item scale to measure the severity of dysphagia in Huntington's disease. © 2014 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society.

  13. Pleomorphic Invasive Ductal Carcinoma of the Breast in a Patient with Huntington's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shousha, Sami

    2014-01-01

    A pleomorphic invasive ductal carcinoma developed in a patient with Huntington's disease. The tumour showed marked nuclear pleomorphism and contained large number of bizarre tumour giant cells and abundant abnormal mitoses. Tumour cells showed nuclear vesicles and inclusions similar to those described in nuclei of neural cells in patients with Huntington's disease. The case suggests that, in some patients, tumour morphology may reflect specific individual features.

  14. Genetics Home Reference: Huntington disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Email Facebook Twitter Home Health Conditions Huntington disease Huntington disease Printable PDF Open All Close All Enable Javascript to view the expand/collapse boxes. Description Huntington disease is a progressive brain disorder that causes ...

  15. Huntington's disease presenting as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Phukan, Julie

    2010-08-01

    We present the clinical, electrophysiological and molecular genetic findings of a 58-year-old male with genetically confirmed Huntington\\'s disease (HD) and concurrent clinically definite ALS by El Escorial criteria. The patient presented with asymmetric upper limb amyotrophy and weakness, and subsequently developed chorea and cognitive change. Genetic testing confirmed the presence of expanded trinucleotide repeats in huntingtin, consistent with a diagnosis of Huntington\\'s disease. This case confirms the rare coexistence of Huntington\\'s disease and motor neuron degeneration.

  16. Huntington disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... that may be associated with this disease: Anxiety, stress, and tension Difficulty swallowing Speech impairment Symptoms in children: Rigidity Slow movements Tremor Exams and Tests The health care provider will perform ...

  17. Cardiac Dysautonomia in Huntington's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abildtrup, Mads; Shattock, Michael

    2013-01-01

    Huntington's disease is a fatal, hereditary, neurodegenerative disorder best known for its clinical triad of progressive motor impairment, cognitive deficits and psychiatric disturbances. Although a disease of the central nervous system, mortality surveys indicate that heart disease is a leading cause of death. The nature of such cardiac abnormalities remains unknown. Clinical findings indicate a high prevalence of autonomic nervous system dysfunction - dysautonomia - which may be a result of pathology of the central autonomic network. Dysautonomia can have profound effects on cardiac health, and pronounced autonomic dysfunction can be associated with neurogenic arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death. Significant advances in the knowledge of neural mechanisms in cardiac disease have recently been made which further aid our understanding of cardiac mortality in Huntington's disease. Even so, despite the evidence of aberrant autonomic activity the potential cardiac consequences of autonomic dysfunction have been somewhat ignored. In fact, underlying cardiac abnormalities such as arrhythmias have been part of the exclusion criteria in clinical autonomic Huntington's disease research. A comprehensive analysis of cardiac function in Huntington's disease patients is warranted. Further experimental and clinical studies are needed to clarify how the autonomic nervous system is controlled and regulated in higher, central areas of the brain - and how these regions may be altered in neurological pathology, such as Huntington's disease. Ultimately, research will hopefully result in an improvement of management with the aim of preventing early death in Huntington's disease from cardiac causes.

  18. Natural history of Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dorsey, E Ray; Beck, Christopher A; Darwin, Kristin; Nichols, Paige; Brocht, Alicia F D; Biglan, Kevin M; Shoulson, Ira

    2013-12-01

    Understanding the natural history of Huntington disease will inform patients and clinicians on the disease course and researchers on the design of clinical trials. To determine the longitudinal change in clinical features among individuals with Huntington disease compared with controls. Prospective, longitudinal cohort study at 44 research sites in Australia (n = 2), Canada (n =4), and the United States (n = 38). Three hundred thirty-four individuals with clinically manifest Huntington disease who had at least 3 years of annually accrued longitudinal data and 142 controls consisting of caregivers and spouses who had no genetic risk of Huntington disease. Change in movement, cognition, behavior, and function as measured by the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale, the Mini-Mental State Examination, and vital signs. Total motor score worsened by 3.0 points (95% CI, 2.5-3.4) per year and chorea worsened by 0.3 point per year (95% CI, 0.1-0.5). Cognition declined by 0.7 point (95% CI, 0.6-0.8) per year on the Mini-Mental State Examination. Behavior, as measured by the product of frequency and severity score on the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale, worsened by 0.6 point per year (95% CI, 0.0-1.2). Total functional capacity declined by 0.6 point per year (95% CI, 0.5-0.7). Compared with controls, baseline body mass index was lower in those with Huntington disease (25.8 vs 28.8; P Huntington disease all declined in a monotonic manner. These data quantify the natural history of the disease and may inform the design of trials aimed at reducing its burden. clinicaltrials.gov Identifier: NCT00313495.

  19. Learning about Huntington's Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skip to main content Learning About Huntington's Disease Enter Search Term(s): Español Research Funding An Overview Bioinformatics Current Grants Education and Training Funding Extramural Research News Features Funding Divisions ...

  20. Huntington's disease: review and anesthetic case management.

    OpenAIRE

    Cangemi, C. F.; Miller, R. J.

    1998-01-01

    Huntington's disease is a dominantly inherited progressive autosomal disease that affects the basal ganglia. Symptoms appear later in life and manifest as progressive mental deterioration and involuntary choreiform movements. Patients with Huntington's disease develop a progressive but variable dementia. Dysphagia, the most significant related motor symptom, hinders nutrition intake and places the patient at risk for aspiration. The combination of involuntary choreoathetoid movements, depress...

  1. Is Huntington's disease a tauopathy?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gratuze, Maud; Cisbani, Giulia; Cicchetti, Francesca; Planel, Emmanuel

    2016-04-01

    Tauopathies are a subclass of neurodegenerative diseases typified by the deposition of abnormal microtubule-associated tau protein within the cerebral tissue. Alzheimer's disease, progressive supranuclear palsy, chronic traumatic encephalopathy and some fronto-temporal dementias are examples of the extended family of tauopathies. In the last decades, intermittent reports of cerebral tau pathology in individuals afflicted with Huntington's disease-an autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disorder that manifests by severe motor, cognitive and psychiatric problems in adulthood-have also begun to surface. These observations remained anecdotal until recently when a series of publications brought forward compelling evidence that this monogenic disorder may, too, be a tauopathy. Collectively, these studies reported that: (i) patients with Huntington's disease present aggregated tau inclusions within various structures of the brain; (ii) tau haplotype influences the cognitive function of Huntington's disease patients; and (iii) that the genetic product of the disease, the mutant huntingtin protein, could alter tau splicing, phosphorylation, oligomerization and subcellular localization. Here, we review the past and current evidence in favour of the postulate that Huntington's disease is a new member of the family of tauopathies. © The Author (2016). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  2. Impact of Huntington's across the entire disease spectrum: the phases and stages of disease from the patient perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ho, AK; Hocaoglu, MB

    2011-01-01

    Ho AK, Hocaoglu MB for the European Huntington's Disease Network Quality of Life Working Group. Impact of Huntington disease across the entire disease spectrum: the phases and stages of disease from the patient perspective. Although Huntington's disease (HD) is a neurodegenerative disease characterized by motor, cognitive and behavioural disturbances, there has been little empirical data examining what patients are most concerned about throughout the different stages of disease, which can span many years. Semi-structured face-to-face interviews were individually conducted with 31 people living with different stages of Huntington's, from pre-clinical gene carriers to advanced stage. We examined how often participants raised issues and concerns regarding the impact of Huntington's on everyday life. The Physical/functional theme hardly featured pre-clinically, but was strongly present from Stage 1, rose steadily and peaked at Stage 5. There were no significant changes between stages for the Emotional, Social, and Self themes that all featured across all stages, indicating that these issues were not raised more frequently over the course of the disease. Likewise, the more rarely mentioned Financial and Legal themes also remained similar across stages. However, the Cognitive theme only featured between Stages 1 and 4, and hardly at all pre-clinically and at Stage 5. These findings provide insight into patients' important and unique perspective and have implications for the management and development of interventions across the spectrum of HD stages. Section Editor: Aad Tibben, email: a.Tibben@lumc.nl PMID:21736564

  3. Music therapy in Huntington's disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bruggen-Rufi, van C.H.M.

    2018-01-01

    The thesis reports about the effects of music therapy with patients in the late stage of Huntington's disease. A literature review, a focus group study, a randomized controlled trial, an evaluation for complex interventions and a case report study are integrated in the thesis. The beneficial

  4. Presence of tau pathology within foetal neural allografts in patients with Huntington's and Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cisbani, Giulia; Maxan, Alexander; Kordower, Jeffrey H; Planel, Emmanuel; Freeman, Thomas B; Cicchetti, Francesca

    2017-11-01

    Cell replacement has been explored as a therapeutic strategy to repair the brain in patients with Huntington's and Parkinson's disease. Post-mortem evaluations of healthy grafted tissue in such cases have revealed the development of Huntington- or Parkinson-like pathology including mutant huntingtin aggregates and Lewy bodies. An outstanding question remains if tau pathology can also be seen in patients with Huntington's and Parkinson's disease who had received foetal neural allografts. This was addressed by immunohistochemical/immunofluorescent stainings performed on grafted tissue of two Huntington's disease patients, who came to autopsy 9 and 12 years post-transplantation, and two patients with Parkinson's disease who came to autopsy 18 months and 16 years post-transplantation. We show that grafts also contain tau pathology in both types of transplanted patients. In two patients with Huntington's disease, the grafted tissue showed the presence of hyperphosphorylated tau [both AT8 (phospho-tau Ser202 and Thr205) and CP13 (pSer202) immunohistochemical stainings] pathological inclusions, neurofibrillary tangles and neuropil threads. In patients with Parkinson's disease, the grafted tissue was characterized by hyperphosphorylated tau (AT8; immunofluorescent staining) pathological inclusions, neurofibrillary tangles and neuropil threads but only in the patient who came to autopsy 16 years post-transplantation. Abundant tau-related pathology was observed in the cortex and striatum of all cases studied. While the striatum of the grafted Huntington's disease patient revealed an equal amount of 3-repeat and 4-repeat isoforms of tau, the grafted tissue showed elevated 4-repeat isoforms by western blot. This suggests that transplants may have acquired tau pathology from the host brain, although another possibility is that this was due to acceleration of ageing. This finding not only adds to the recent reports that tau pathology is a feature of these neurodegenerative

  5. Huntington's disease and Huntington's disease-like syndromes: an overview.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gövert, Felix; Schneider, Susanne A

    2013-08-01

    The differential diagnosis of chorea syndromes may be complex and includes various genetic disorders such as Huntington's disease and mimicking disorders called Huntington's disease-like (HDL) phenotypes. To familiarize clinicians with these (in some cases very rare) conditions we will summarize the main characteristics. HDL disorders are rare and account for about 1% of cases presenting with a Huntington's disease phenotype. They share overlapping clinical features, so making the diagnosis purely on clinical grounds may be challenging, however presence of certain characteristics may be a clue (e.g. prominent orofacial involvement in neuroferritinopathy etc.), Information of ethnic descent will also guide genetic work-up [HDL2 in Black Africans; dentatorubral-pallidoluysian atrophy (DRPLA) in Japanese etc.], Huntington's disease, the classical HDL disorders (except HDL3) and DRPLA are repeat disorders with anticipation effect and age-dependent phenotype in some, but genetic underpinnings may be more complicated in the other chorea syndromes. With advances in genetics more and more rare diseases are disentangled, allowing molecular diagnoses in a growing number of choreic patients. Hopefully, with better understanding of their pathophysiology we are moving towards mechanistic therapies.

  6. [The hypothalamus in Huntington's disease].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bellosta-Diago, E; Viloria-Alebesque, A; Santos-Lasaosa, S; Lopez Del Val, L J

    2017-11-01

    Disorders affecting sleep and the circadian rhythm, autonomic clinical signs and symptoms, and neuroendocrine alterations are frequent characteristics in Huntington's disease, some of which present in early stages of the disease. It is reasonable to think that some of these features could result from a hypothalamic dysfunction affecting the centre regulating sleep, metabolism and the autonomic nervous system. The study presents the evidence available to date that suggests the involvement of a hypothalamic disorder in Huntington's disease. Histopathological, hormonal and neuroimaging research relates this area of the brain to Huntington's disease. The experimental findings and those obtained with animal models or in studies conducted with patients are summarised. Likewise, the clinical repercussions (sleep and circadian rhythm disorders, psychiatric and cognitive pathologies, and the clinical signs and symptoms linked to autonomic dysfunction) secondary to possible involvement of the hypothalamus in this disease are also described. The hypothalamus acts as a centre that integrates the neuroendocrine and autonomic functions, and plays a significant role in cognitive and behavioural signs and symptoms. Disorders of this type have been highlighted in Huntington's disease. Further studies are needed to elucidate the role and scope of this region of the brain in this disease.

  7. Drug-induced hyperthermia in Huntington's disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gaasbeek, D; Naarding, Paul; Stor, T; Kremer, H P H

    Until now, only three patients with Huntington's disease (HD) and a neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS) have been reported in the literature. We describe four cases with advanced stage Huntington's disease who within a period of one year developed drug-induced hyperthermia, either the neuroleptic

  8. Apathy is not depression in Huntington's disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Naarding, Paul; Janzing, Joost G E; Eling, Paul; van der Werf, Sieberen; Kremer, Berry

    2009-01-01

    Apathy and depression are common neuropsychiatric features of Huntington's disease. The authors studied a group of 34 Huntington's disease patients. In addition to the conventional classification according to DSM-IV criteria of depression, emphasis was put on a dimensional approach using scores on

  9. Drug-induced hyperthermia in Huntington's disease.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gaasbeek, D.; Naarding, P.; Stor, T.; Kremer, H.P.H.

    2004-01-01

    Until now, only three patients with Huntington's disease (HD) and a neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS) have been reported in the literature. We describe four cases with advanced stage Huntington's disease who within a period of one year developed drug-induced hyperthermia, either the neuroleptic

  10. Survey of the Huntington's Disease Patient and Caregiver Community Reveals Most Impactful Symptoms and Treatment Needs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simpson, Jennifer A; Lovecky, Debra; Kogan, Jane; Vetter, Louise A; Yohrling, George J

    2016-12-15

    In preparation for a meeting with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Patient-Focused Drug Development in Huntington's disease, the Huntington's Disease Society of America (HDSA) created and distributed two comprehensive surveys on the symptom experience and treatment approaches for Huntington's disease. The objective of these surveys was to identify the specific symptoms that most impact the daily lives of individuals with Huntington's disease/Juvenile Huntington's disease (HD/JHD) and their caregivers and to solicit input on the types of treatments desired by HD affected families. The data were shared with the FDA to offer background and insight in preparation for the patient-focused meeting, as well as to ensure representation by the community in a manner that would complement those who attended in person. Two distinct surveys were created using SurveyMonkey to capture patient and caregiver perspectives on HD symptoms and current treatments. HDSA distributed the surveys to the HD community in August and September 2014 and collected responses through January 2015. More than 3,600 responses to the two surveys were received. The data showed that both caregivers and individuals with HD were severely impacted by the cognitive and behavioral symptoms of HD with HD patients reporting problems with executive functioning and cognitive decline as most impactful to them. However, 30 percent of caregivers reported that chorea was the most impactful symptom compared to 17 percent of people with HD. Across all the symptom categories, patients reported a lower occurrence of symptoms than were reported by their caregivers. With only one drug approved for treatment of a symptom of Huntington's disease and no disease modifying treatments available, there is a critical need for new medicines to treat the cognitive, psychiatric and motor symptoms associated with HD. While the surveys did not capture risk/benefit data, the data collected do provide new insights around the

  11. Junctophilin 3 (JPH3) expansion mutations causing Huntington disease like 2 (HDL2) are common in South African patients with African ancestry and a Huntington disease phenotype.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krause, Amanda; Mitchell, Claire; Essop, Fahmida; Tager, Susan; Temlett, James; Stevanin, Giovanni; Ross, Christopher; Rudnicki, Dobrila; Margolis, Russell

    2015-10-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is a progressive autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disorder, characterized by abnormal movements, cognitive decline, and psychiatric symptoms, caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the huntingtin (HTT) gene on chromosome 4p. A CAG/CTG repeat expansion in the junctophilin-3 (JPH3) gene on chromosome 16q24.2 causes a Huntington disease-like phenotype (HDL2). All patients to date with HDL2 have some African ancestry. The present study aimed to characterize the genetic basis of the Huntington disease phenotype in South Africans and to investigate the possible origin of the JPH3 mutation. In a sample of unrelated South African individuals referred for diagnostic HD testing, 62% (106/171) of white patients compared to only 36% (47/130) of black patients had an expansion in HTT. However, 15% (20/130) of black South African patients and no white patients (0/171) had an expansion in JPH3, confirming the diagnosis of Huntington disease like 2 (HDL2). Individuals with HDL2 share many clinical features with individuals with HD and are clinically indistinguishable in many cases, although the average age of onset and diagnosis in HDL2 is 5 years later than HD and individual clinical features may be more prominent. HDL2 mutations contribute significantly to the HD phenotype in South Africans with African ancestry. JPH3 haplotype studies in 31 families, mainly from South Africa and North America, provide evidence for a founder mutation and support a common African origin for all HDL2 patients. Molecular testing in individuals with an HD phenotype and African ancestry should include testing routinely for JPH3 mutations. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  12. Care of patients with Huntington's disease in South America: a survey

    OpenAIRE

    Maciel, Ricardo Oliveira Horta; Cardoso, Francisco Eduardo Costa; Chana-Cuevas, Pedro; Cosentino, Carlos; Fernandez, William; Rieder, Carlos R. M.; Serrano-Duenas, Marcos; Weiser, Roberto

    2013-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a rare neurodegenerative disease with a multitude of symptoms, which requires access to specialized multidisciplinary care for adequate management. The aim of this study was to survey the characteristics of care in various HD centers in South America (SA). Methods A questionnaire was sent to 24 centers involved in the care for HD patients in SA. Results Of the total 24 centers, 19 (79.2%) are academic units. The majority of centers (62.5%) are general movement ...

  13. Huntington's disease: a perplexing neurological disease ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Huntington's disease has served as a model for the study of other more common neurodegenerative disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. Symptomatic treatment of Huntington's disease involves use of Dopamine antagonists, presynaptic dopamine depleters, Antidepressants, Tranquillizers ...

  14. The Effect of Music Therapy in Patients with Huntington's Disease: A Randomized Controlled Trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Bruggen-Rufi, Monique C H; Vink, Annemieke C; Wolterbeek, Ron; Achterberg, Wilco P; Roos, Raymund A C

    2017-01-01

    Music therapy may have beneficial effects on improving communication and expressive skills in patients with Huntington's disease (HD). Most studies are, however, small observational studies and methodologically limited. Therefore we conducted a multi-center randomized controlled trial. To determine the efficacy of music therapy in comparison with recreational therapy in improving quality of life of patients with advanced Huntington's disease by means of improving communication. Sixty-three HD-patients with a Total Functional Capacity (TFC) score of ≤7, admitted to four long-term care facilities in The Netherlands, were randomized to receive either group music therapy or group recreational therapy in 16 weekly sessions. They were assessed at baseline, after 8, 16 and 28 weeks using the Behaviour Observation Scale for Huntington (BOSH) and the Problem Behaviour Assessment-short version (PBA-s). A linear mixed model with repeated measures was used to compare the scores between the two groups. Group music therapy offered once weekly for 16 weeks to patients with Huntington's disease had no additional beneficial effect on communication or behavior compared to group recreational therapy. This was the first study to assess the effect of group music therapy on HD patients in the advanced stages of the disease. The beneficial effects of music therapy, recorded in many, mainly qualitative case reports and studies, could not be confirmed with the design (i.e. group therapy vs individual therapy) and outcome measures that have been used in the present study. A comprehensive process-evaluation alongside the present effect evaluation is therefore performed.

  15. Clinical presentation of juvenile Huntington disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruocco Heloísa H.

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVE: To describe the clinical presentation a group of patients with juvenile onset of Huntington disease. METHOD: All patients were interviewed following a structured clinical questioner. Patients were genotyped for the trinucleotide cytosine-adenine-guanine (CAG repeat in the Huntington Disease gene. High resolution brain MRI was performed in all patients. RESULTS: We identified 4 patients with juvenile onset of disease among 50 patients with Huntington disease followed prospectively in our Neurogenetics clinic. Age at onset varied from 3 to 13 years, there were 2 boys, and 3 patients had a paternal inheritance of the disease. Expanded Huntington disease allele sizes varied from 41 to 69 trinucleotide repeats. The early onset patients presented with rigidity, bradykinesia, dystonia, dysarthria, seizures and ataxia. MRI showed severe volume loss of caudate and putamen nuclei (p=0.001 and reduced cerebral and cerebellum volumes (p=0.01. CONCLUSION: 8% of Huntington disease patients seen in our clinic had juvenile onset of the disease. They did not present with typical chorea as seen in adult onset Huntington disease. There was a predominance of rigidity and bradykinesia. Two other important clinical features were seizures and ataxia, which related with the imaging findings of early cortical atrophy and cerebellum volume loss.

  16. Is Huntington's disease a tauopathy?

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Gratuze, Maud; Cisbani, Giulia; Cicchetti, Francesca; Planel, Emmanuel

    2016-01-01

    .... In the last decades, intermittent reports of cerebral tau pathology in individuals afflicted with Huntington's disease-an autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disorder that manifests by severe motor...

  17. Neuropsychiatric Burden in Huntington's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paoli, Ricardo Augusto; Botturi, Andrea; Ciammola, Andrea; Silani, Vincenzo; Prunas, Cecilia; Lucchiari, Claudio; Zugno, Elisa; Caletti, Elisabetta

    2017-06-16

    Huntington's disease is a disorder that results in motor, cognitive, and psychiatric problems. The symptoms often take different forms and the presence of disturbances of the psychic sphere reduces patients' autonomy and quality of life, also impacting patients' social life. It is estimated that a prevalence between 33% and 76% of the main psychiatric syndromes may arise in different phases of the disease, often in atypical form, even 20 years before the onset of chorea and dementia. We present a narrative review of the literature describing the main psychopathological patterns that may be found in Huntington's disease, searching for a related article in the main database sources (Medline, ISI Web of Knowledge, Scopus, and Medscape). Psychiatric conditions were classified into two main categories: affective and nonaffective disorders/symptoms; and anxiety and neuropsychiatric features such as apathy and irritability. Though the literature is extensive, it is not always convergent, probably due to the high heterogeneity of methods used. We summarize main papers for pathology and sample size, in order to present a synoptic vision of the argument. Since the association between Huntington's disease and psychiatric symptoms was demonstrated, we argue that the prevalent and more invalidating psychiatric components should be recognized as early as possible during the disease course in order to best address psychopharmacological therapy, improve quality of life, and also reduce burden on caregivers.

  18. Psychopathology in Huntington's disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Duijn, Erik van

    2010-01-01

    Dit proefschrift begint met een overzichtsartikel van oorspronkelijke onderzoek naar psychopathologie bij mutatiedragers voor de ziekte van Huntington. Aansluitend worden de resultaten van een cohortstudie naar de aanwezigheid en ernst van psychopathologie bij mensen met de ziekte van Huntington in

  19. Developing a comprehensive, effective patient-friendly website to enhance decision making in predictive testing for Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawkins Virani, Alice K; Creighton, S M; Hayden, M R

    2013-06-01

    Predictive testing for Huntington disease is a complex decision, requiring in-depth counseling, education, and evaluation. Despite the growth in Web-based decision aids and educational resources, such tools for those considering Huntington disease testing are not available. The main objective of this project was to develop a patient-friendly, comprehensive, accessible Web-based tool to provide accurate information about testing for Huntington disease. A semistructured interview study was conducted to determine the informational, educational, and support needs of those considering Huntington disease testing. A dedicated predictive testing website was subsequently developed and pilot tested. The interview study revealed that an effective website should include interactive diagrams, video documentaries, and personal stories of others who had considered testing. The pilot test revealed that the multidimensional site was easy to navigate and understand and provided an accurate, unbiased overview of the important factors to be considered before undergoing predictive testing. This project demonstrates the use of a mixed-method approach to develop the first tailored website dedicated to predictive testing for Huntington disease. Such an approach enabled the development of a comprehensive, accurate, and effective educational tool that supports informed decision making for people considering predictive testing for Huntington disease in an accessible, nonthreatening manner.

  20. Epigenetic modifications as novel therapeutic targets for Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Fengli; Fischhaber, Paula L; Guo, Caixia; Tang, Tie-Shan

    2014-06-01

    Huntington's disease is a late-onset, autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disorder characterized by motor, cognitive and psychiatric symptomatology. The earliest stage of Huntington's disease is marked by alterations in gene expression, which partially results from dysregulated epigenetic modifications. In past decades, altered epigenetic markers including histone modifications (acetylation, methylation, ubiquitylation and phosphorylation) and DNA modifications (cytosine methylation and hydroxymethylation) have been reported as important epigenetic features in patients and multiple animal models of Huntington's disease. Drugs aimed to correct some of those alterations have shown promise in treating Huntington's disease. This article discusses the field of epigenetics for potential Huntington's disease interventions and presents the most recent findings in this area.

  1. Female Sexual Dysfunction in Presymptomatic Mutation Carriers and Patients with Huntington's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolenc, Matej; Kobal, Jan; Podnar, Simon

    2017-01-01

    Although in Huntington's disease (HD) movement, cognition, and personality are most significantly affected, autonomic dysfunction should not be neglected. In women with HD sexual dysfunction has not been adequately studied yet. To report sexual dysfunction in a systematically studied cohort of female HD patients and compare it with controls of a similar age. In female HD patients and presymptomatic HD mutation carriers, we compared the Female Sexual Function Index (FSFI) questionnaire, neurologic assessment using the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS) and the Total Functional Capacity (TFC). Of 44 female HD patients and 9 presymptomatic HD mutation carriers, 30 HD patients and 8 HD mutation carriers responded our invitation to complete FFSI questionnaire. Finally, 23 HD women with a partner were compared to 47 controls with a partner. HD patients had more problems with sexual arousal, lubrication, orgasm and sexual satisfaction. By contrast, we found no difference in sexual desire and pain. Sexual dysfunction progressed in parallel with the decline in the TFC; severe sexual dysfunction occurred with TFC disease itself, side effects of medication, and comorbidities like depression or dementia.

  2. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study of latrepirdine in patients with mild to moderate Huntington disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hjermind, Lena Elisabeth

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND Latrepirdine is an orally administered experimental small molecule that was initially developed as an antihistamine and subsequently was shown to stabilize mitochondrial membranes and function, which might be impaired in Huntington disease. OBJECTIVE To determine the effect of latrepir......BACKGROUND Latrepirdine is an orally administered experimental small molecule that was initially developed as an antihistamine and subsequently was shown to stabilize mitochondrial membranes and function, which might be impaired in Huntington disease. OBJECTIVE To determine the effect...... of latrepirdine on cognition and global function in patients with mild to moderate Huntington disease. DESIGN Randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study. SETTING Sixty-four research centers in Australia, Europe, and North America. PATIENTS Four hundred three patients with mild to moderate Huntington...... between those randomized to latrepirdine (68.5%) and placebo (68.0%). CONCLUSION In patients with mild to moderate Huntington disease and cognitive impairment, treatment with latrepirdine for 6 months was safe and well tolerated but did not improve cognition or global function relative to placebo. TRIAL...

  3. Hypothalamic Alterations in Huntington's Disease Patients : Comparison with Genetic Rodent Models

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van Wamelen, D.J.; Aziz, N A; Roos, R A C; Swaab, D F

    2014-01-01

    Unintended weight loss, sleep and circadian disturbances and autonomic dysfunction are prevalent features of Huntington's disease (HD), an autosomal dominantly inherited neurodegenerative disorder caused by an expanded CAG repeat sequence in the HTT gene. These features form a substantial

  4. Clinical and genetic data of Huntington disease in Moroccan patients

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    motor (19/21) mainly chorea, dysarthria and dysphagia. Twelve patients presented with psychiatric and behavio- ral disorders particularly irritability, apathy and depres- sion. Eleven patients had cognitive disorders essentially of memory impairment, attention deficit and executive dysfunction. African Health Sciences Vol 15 ...

  5. Modulation at Age of Onset in Tunisian Huntington Disease Patients: Implication of New Modifier Genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dorra Hmida-Ben Brahim

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Huntington’s disease (HD is an autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disorder. The causative mutation is an expansion of more than 36 CAG repeats in the first exon of IT15 gene. Many studies have shown that the IT15 interacts with several modifier genes to regulate the age at onset (AO of HD. Our study aims to investigate the implication of CAG expansion and 9 modifiers in the age at onset variance of 15 HD Tunisian patients and to establish the correlation between these modifiers genes and the AO of this disease. Despite the small number of studied patients, this report consists of the first North African study in Huntington disease patients. Our results approve a specific effect of modifiers genes in each population.

  6. Patient-reported outcomes in Huntington's disease: Quality of life in neurological disorders (Neuro-QoL) and Huntington's disease health-related quality of life (HDQLIFE) physical function measures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlozzi, Noelle E; Ready, Rebecca E; Frank, Samuel; Cella, David; Hahn, Elizabeth A; Goodnight, Siera M; Schilling, Stephen G; Boileau, Nicholas R; Dayalu, Praveen

    2017-07-01

    There is a need for patient-reported outcome measures that capture the impact that motor impairments have on health-related quality of life in individuals with Huntington's disease. The objectives of this study were to establish the reliability and validity of new physical functioning patient-reported outcome measures in Huntington's disease. A total of 510 individuals with Huntington's disease completed 2 Quality of Life in Neurological Disorders (Lower Extremity Function and Upper Extremity Function) and 3 Huntington's Disease Health-Related Quality of Life (Chorea, Speech Difficulties, and Swallowing Difficulties) measures. Clinician-rated and generic self-report measures were also administered. Reliabilities for the new patient reported physical functioning measures were excellent (all Cronbach's α > .92). Convergent, discriminant validity and known group validity was supported. The results provide psychometric support for new patient-reported physical functioning measures and the fact that these measures can be used as clinically meaningful endpoints in Huntington's disease research and clinical practice. © 2017 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society. © 2017 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society.

  7. Genetic modifiers of Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gusella, James F; MacDonald, Marcy E; Lee, Jong-Min

    2014-09-15

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a devastating neurodegenerative disorder that directly affects more than 1 in 10,000 persons in Western societies but, as a family disorder with a long, costly, debilitating course, it has an indirect impact on a far greater proportion of the population. Although some palliative treatments are used, no effective treatment exists for preventing clinical onset of the disorder or for delaying its inevitable progression toward premature death, approximately 15 years after diagnosis. Huntington's disease involves a movement disorder characterized by chorea, as well as a variety of psychiatric disturbances and intellectual decline, with a gradual loss of independence. A dire need exists for effective HD therapies to alleviate the suffering and costs to the individual, family, and health care system. In past decades, genetics, the study of DNA sequence variation and its consequences, provided the tools to map the HD gene to chromosome 4 and ultimately to identify its mutation as an expanded CAG trinucleotide repeat in the coding sequence of a large protein, dubbed huntingtin. Now, advances in genetic technology offer an unbiased route to the identification of genetic factors that are disease-modifying agents in human patients. Such genetic modifiers are expected to highlight processes capable of altering the course of HD and therefore to provide new, human-validated targets for traditional drug development, with the goal of developing rational treatments to delay or prevent onset of HD clinical signs. © 2014 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society.

  8. Language impairment in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Azambuja, Mariana Jardim; Radanovic, Marcia; Haddad, Mônica Santoro; Adda, Carla Cristina; Barbosa, Egberto Reis; Mansur, Letícia Lessa

    2012-06-01

    Language alterations in Huntington's disease (HD) are reported, but their nature and correlation with other cognitive impairments are still under investigation. This study aimed to characterize the language disturbances in HD and to correlate them to motor and cognitive aspects of the disease. We studied 23 HD patients and 23 controls, matched for age and schooling, using the Boston Diagnostic Aphasia Examination, Boston Naming Test, the Token Test, Animal fluency, Action fluency, FAS-COWA, the Symbol Digit Modalities Test, the Stroop Test and the Hooper Visual Organization Test (HVOT). HD patients performed poorer in verbal fluency (pLanguage Competency Indexes and the HVOT (r=0.519, p=0.011 and r=0.450, p=0.031, respectively). Language alterations in HD seem to reflect a derangement in both frontostriatal and frontotemporal regions.

  9. Metformin intake associates with better cognitive function in patients with Huntington's disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Hervás

    Full Text Available Huntington's disease (HD is an inherited, dominant neurodegenerative disorder caused by an abnormal expansion of CAG triplets in the huntingtin gene (htt. Despite extensive efforts to modify the progression of HD thus far only symptomatic treatment is available. Recent work suggests that treating invertebrate and mice HD models with metformin, a well-known AMPK activator which is used worldwide to treat type 2-diabetes, reduces mutant huntingtin from cells and alleviates many of the phenotypes associated to HD. Herein we report statistical analyses of a sample population of participants in the Enroll-HD database, a world-wide observational study on HD, to assess the effect of metformin intake in HD patients respect to cognitive status using linear models. This cross-sectional study shows for the first time that the use of metformin associates with better cognitive function in HD patients.

  10. Revisiting the neuropsychiatry of Huntington's disease

    OpenAIRE

    Teixeira, Antonio Lucio; Souza, Leonardo Cruz de; Rocha, Natalia Pessoa; Furr-Stimming, Erin; Lauterbach, Edward C.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Huntington's disease (HD) is an autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disease classified under the choreas. Besides motor symptoms, HD is marked by cognitive and behavioral symptoms, impacting patients' functional capacity. The progression of cognitive impairment and neuropsychiatric symptoms occur in parallel with neurodegeneration. The nature of these symptoms is very dynamic, and the major clinical challenges include executive dysfunction, apathy, depression and irritability. Herei...

  11. Huntington's disease: a clinical review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roos Raymund AC

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Huntington disease (HD is a rare neurodegenerative disorder of the central nervous system characterized by unwanted choreatic movements, behavioral and psychiatric disturbances and dementia. Prevalence in the Caucasian population is estimated at 1/10,000-1/20,000. Mean age at onset of symptoms is 30-50 years. In some cases symptoms start before the age of 20 years with behavior disturbances and learning difficulties at school (Juvenile Huntington's disease; JHD. The classic sign is chorea that gradually spreads to all muscles. All psychomotor processes become severely retarded. Patients experience psychiatric symptoms and cognitive decline. HD is an autosomal dominant inherited disease caused by an elongated CAG repeat (36 repeats or more on the short arm of chromosome 4p16.3 in the Huntingtine gene. The longer the CAG repeat, the earlier the onset of disease. In cases of JHD the repeat often exceeds 55. Diagnosis is based on clinical symptoms and signs in an individual with a parent with proven HD, and is confirmed by DNA determination. Pre-manifest diagnosis should only be performed by multidisciplinary teams in healthy at-risk adult individuals who want to know whether they carry the mutation or not. Differential diagnoses include other causes of chorea including general internal disorders or iatrogenic disorders. Phenocopies (clinically diagnosed cases of HD without the genetic mutation are observed. Prenatal diagnosis is possible by chorionic villus sampling or amniocentesis. Preimplantation diagnosis with in vitro fertilization is offered in several countries. There is no cure. Management should be multidisciplinary and is based on treating symptoms with a view to improving quality of life. Chorea is treated with dopamine receptor blocking or depleting agents. Medication and non-medical care for depression and aggressive behavior may be required. The progression of the disease leads to a complete dependency in daily life, which

  12. Avoidance as a strategy of (not coping: qualitative interviews with carers of Huntington's Disease patients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    van Teijlingen Edwin R

    2005-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Since Huntington's Disease (HD is a familial disease with an average onset in the mid-thirties, one might expect that spousal carers are concerned with providing care for off-spring who may turn out to be affected. Methods This study involved ten face-to-face interviews with carers of spouses affected by HD in Northeast Scotland. Carers were recruited through two channels: a genetic clinic and the Scottish Huntington's Association (SHA. Interviews were conducted in carers' own homes. A thematic analysis of the transcripts was conducted. Results Although carers did worry about their children, they did not envisage being involved in their care. Many avoided talking about the disease, both within and outwith their family; this may have greatly reduced the level of support provided by family members. Conversely, avoidance was often accompanied by symptom-spotting. For example, several people had given up driving, before they were incapable of doing so. The explanation appears to be that they avoided getting into situations in which HD may express itself. Support meetings seem to be valued amongst patients with other serious diseases and their carers, however, although all participants had had contact with the SHA, only one regularly attended meetings. It was felt that seeing others with HD provided a constant reminder of the possible effect of HD on the wider family, which seemed to outweigh the benefit of attending. Overall, the analysis highlighted 'avoidance' as a key theme. Conclusion Many denied symptoms of HD in their spouses, pre-diagnosis. All had pretended at some point that it was not happening, through ignoring early signs and 'obvious' symptoms. Some partners had refused to go to the doctor until it was no longer possible to deny symptoms. Formal health and social care seemed to play a very small role compared to informal care arrangements.

  13. Energy Balance in Huntington's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gil Polo, Cecilia; Cubo Delgado, Esther; Mateos Cachorro, Ana; Rivadeneyra Posadas, Jéssica; Mariscal Pérez, Natividad; Armesto Formoso, Diana

    2015-01-01

    Little is known about the energy needs in Huntington's disease (HD). The aims of this study are to analyze and compare the total energy expenditure (TEE) and energy balance (EB) in a representative sample of HD patients with healthy controls. This is an observational, case-control single-center study. Food caloric energy intake (EI) and TEE were considered for estimating EB. A dietary recall questionnaire was used to assess the EI. TEE was computed as the sum of resting energy expenditure (REE), measured by indirect calorimetry and physical activity (PA) monitored by an actigraph. A total of 22 patients were included (36% men, mean age 50.3 ± 15.6 years, motor Unified Huntington's Disease Scale 27.9 ± 23.7, total functional capacity 11.0 (7.0-13.0), EI 38.6 ± 10.0 kcal/kg, PA 5.3 (3.0-7.4) kcal/kg, REE 30.9 ± 6.4 kcal/kg, TEE 2,023.4 (1,592.0-2,226.5) kcal/day) and 18 controls (50% men, mean age 47.4 ± 13.8 years, EI 38.6 ± 10.3 kcal/kg, PA 8.4 (5.0-13.8) kcal/kg, REE 30.8 ± 6.6 kcal/kg, TEE 2,281.0 (2,057.3-2,855.3) kcal/day). TEE was significantly lower in patients compared to controls (p = 0.03). PA was lower in patients compared to controls (p = 0.02). Although patients with HD appeared to have lower energy expenditure, mainly due to decreased voluntary PA, they were still able to maintain their energy needs with an adequate food intake. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  14. Dose-dependent improvement of myoclonic hyperkinesia due to Valproic acid in eight Huntington's Disease patients: a case series

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Przuntek Horst

    2006-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Chorea in Huntington's Disease (HD is usually treated with antidopaminergic neuroleptics like haloperidol, olanzapine and tiaprid or dopamine depleting drugs like tetrabenazine. Some patients with hyperkinesia, however, react to treatment with antidopaminergic drugs by developing extrapyramidal side effects. In earlier studies valproic acid showed no beneficial effect on involuntary choreatic movements. Myoclonus is rare in HD and is often overseen or misdiagnosed as chorea. Methods In this report, we present eight patients whose main symptom is myoclonic hyperkinesia. All patients were treated with valproic acid and scored by using the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS motor score before and after treatment. In addition to this, two patients agreed to be videotaped. Results In seven patients myoclonus and, therefore the UHDRS motor score improved in a dose dependent manner. In three of these patients antidopaminergic medication could be reduced. Conclusion In the rare subgroup of HD patients suffering from myoclonic hyperkinesia, valproic acid is a possible alternative treatment.

  15. Clinical and genetic characteristics in patients with Huntington's disease from China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Jing; Chen, Ke; Wei, Qianqian; Chen, Yongping; Cao, Bei; Burgunder, Jean-Marc; Shang, Hui-Fang

    2016-10-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a neurodegenerative disease caused by the expansion of unstable CAG repeats in the HTT gene. There are scarce data about HD in China. Fifty-eight HD patients were consecutively recruited and assessed using the Unified HD Rating Scale (UHDRS) motor section and UHDRS behaviour assessment (UHDRS-b). Genetic analyses were also conducted. Thirty-three women and Twenty -five men were diagnosed with a mean age of 46.1 ± 11.2 years and a mean number of CAG triplet repeats 44.6 ± 4.4. CAG triplet repeat number was negatively correlated with age at onset, and positively correlated with UHDRS-b total score, and its subdomains including depressed mood, low self-esteem, anxiety and irritability. On the other hand, negative correlations were identified between age at onset and UHDRS-b total score, and its subdomains include low self-esteem, anxiety, suicidal thought, irritability and apathy. Disease durations were correlated with UHDRS motor scores and anxiety domain of UHDRS-b. This is the largest series of Chinese HD patients with demographic, clinical and genetic data confirms the demographic features of Chinese HD patients are comparable to those in other ethnic backgrounds. CAG triplet repeat number may also predict the severity of behaviour problems in HD patients besides its predication for age of onset.

  16. Hypothalamic alterations in Huntington's disease patients: comparison with genetic rodent models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Wamelen, D J; Aziz, N A; Roos, R A C; Swaab, D F

    2014-11-01

    Unintended weight loss, sleep and circadian disturbances and autonomic dysfunction are prevalent features of Huntington's disease (HD), an autosomal dominantly inherited neurodegenerative disorder caused by an expanded CAG repeat sequence in the HTT gene. These features form a substantial contribution to disease burden in HD patients and appear to be accompanied by a number of neuroendocrine and metabolic changes, pointing towards hypothalamic pathology as a likely underlying mechanism. Neuronal inclusion bodies of mutant huntingtin, which are hallmarks of the disease, occur throughout the hypothalamus, and indicate local mutant huntingtin expression that could interfere with hypothalamic neuropeptide production. Also, several genetic rodent models of HD show features that could be related to hypothalamic pathology, such as weight loss and circadian rhythm disturbances. In these rodents, several hypothalamic neuropeptide populations are affected. In the present review, we summarise the changes in genetic rodent models of HD for individual hypothalamic nuclei, compare these observations to the hypothalamic changes that occur in HD patients, and make an inventory of the work that still needs to be done. Surprisingly, there is only limited overlap in the hypothalamic changes reported in HD patients and genetic rodent models. At present, the only similarity between the hypothalamic alterations in HD patients and genetic rodent models is a decrease in the number of orexin-expressing neurones in the lateral hypothalamus. Possible reasons for these discrepancies, as well as potential consequences for the development of novel therapeutic strategies, are discussed. © 2014 British Society for Neuroendocrinology.

  17. Language functions in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Podoll, K; Caspary, P; Lange, H W; Noth, J

    1988-12-01

    A comprehensive language test battery (Aachen Aphasia Test) was administered to 45 patients in the early, middle or later stages of Huntington's disease (HD) and to 20 control subjects. In spontaneous speech, many HD patients exhibited a loss of conversational initiative. Dysarthria was a common finding. Reading skills were found to be impaired mainly as a consequence of dysarthria; some HD patients displayed visual dyslexia. In addition to the characteristic disturbances of writing skills due to the choreiform movement disorder, the writing of HD patients with advanced dementia indicated constructional dysgraphia, characterized by frequent omissions, perseverations and substitutions. HD patients exhibited no evidence of word-finding difficulty or other semantic deficits in spontaneous speech. There was, however, a marked impairment in visual confrontation naming, with a significant rise in naming error rate as the disease progressed in severity. In most instances, the inappropriate names referred to an object visually similar to the target object, suggesting that visual misperception is the major cause of the naming disorder in HD. Syntactical structure of spontaneous speech was typically reduced to short, simple sentence construction. Verbal stereotypes were only rarely encountered and occurred late in the course of the disease. Tests of language comprehension reflected the general degree of dementia. It is concluded that there are no primary language changes in HD. Instead, a variety of language impairments develop secondary to other neurological and neuropsychological changes.

  18. Dysphagia in Huntington's disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heemskerk-van den Berg, Willemien Antoinette

    2015-01-01

    Huntington’s disease (HD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease with an autosomal, dominant mode of inheritance. Patients with HD suffer from dysphagia which can have serious consequences, such as weight loss, dehydration, and pneumonia leading to death. Many patients with HD die of aspiration

  19. Exercise effects in Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frese, Sebastian; Petersen, Jens A; Ligon-Auer, Maria; Mueller, Sandro Manuel; Mihaylova, Violeta; Gehrig, Saskia M; Kana, Veronika; Rushing, Elisabeth J; Unterburger, Evelyn; Kägi, Georg; Burgunder, Jean-Marc; Toigo, Marco; Jung, Hans H

    2017-01-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is a relentlessly progressive neurodegenerative disorder with symptoms across a wide range of neurological domains, including cognitive and motor dysfunction. There is still no causative treatment for HD but environmental factors such as passive lifestyle may modulate disease onset and progression. In humans, multidisciplinary rehabilitation has a positive impact on cognitive functions. However, a specific role for exercise as a component of an environmental enrichment effect has been difficult to demonstrate. We aimed at investigating whether endurance training (ET) stabilizes the progression of motor and cognitive dysfunction and ameliorates cardiovascular function in HD patients. Twelve male HD patients (mean ± SD, 54.8 ± 7.1 years) and twelve male controls (49.1 ± 6.8 years) completed 26 weeks of endurance training. Before and after the training intervention, clinical assessments, exercise physiological tests, and a body composition measurement were conducted and a muscle biopsy was taken from M. vastus lateralis. To examine the natural course of the disease, HD patients were additionally assessed 6 months prior to ET. During the ET period, there was a motor deficit stabilization as indicated by the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale motor section score in HD patients (baseline: 18.6 ± 9.2, pre-training: 26.0 ± 13.7, post-training: 26.8 ± 16.4). Peak oxygen uptake ([Formula: see text]) significantly increased in HD patients (∆[Formula: see text] = +0.33 ± 0.28 l) and controls (∆[Formula: see text] = +0.29 ± 0.41 l). No adverse effects of the training intervention were reported. Our results confirm that HD patients are amenable to a specific exercise-induced therapeutic strategy indicated by an increased cardiovascular function and a stabilization of motor function.

  20. Hypocretin and melanin-concentrating hormone in patients with Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aziz, Ahmad; Fronczek, Rolf; Maat-Schieman, Marion; Unmehopa, Unga; Roelandse, Freek; Overeem, Sebastiaan; van Duinen, Sjoerd; Lammers, Gert-Jan; Swaab, Dick; Roos, Raymund

    2008-10-01

    To evaluate whether hypocretin-1 (orexin-A) and melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH) neurotransmission are affected in patients with Huntington disease (HD), we immunohistochemically stained hypocretin and MCH neurons and estimated their total numbers in the lateral hypothalamus of both HD patients and matched controls. In addition, hypocretin-1 levels were determined in prefrontal cortical tissue and post-mortem ventricular cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) using a radioimmunoassay. The total number of hypocretin-1 neurons was significantly reduced by 30% in HD brains (P = 0.015), while the total number of MCH neurons was not significantly altered (P = 0.100). Levels of hypocretin-1 were 33% lower in the prefrontal cortex of the HD patients (P = 0.025), but ventricular CSF levels were similar to the control values (P = 0.306). Neuronal intranuclear and cytoplasmic inclusions of mutant huntingtin were present in all HD hypothalami, although with a variable distribution across different hypothalamic structures. We found a specific reduction in hypocretin signaling in patients with HD as MCH cell number was not significantly affected. It remains to be shown whether the moderate decrease in hypocretin neurotransmission could contribute to clinical symptoms. As the number of MCH-expressing neurons was not affected, alterations in MCH signaling are unlikely to have clinical effects in HD patients.

  1. A Metabolic Study of Huntington's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nambron, Rajasree; Silajdžić, Edina; Kalliolia, Eirini; Ottolenghi, Chris; Hindmarsh, Peter; Hill, Nathan R; Costelloe, Seán J; Martin, Nicholas G; Positano, Vincenzo; Watt, Hilary C; Frost, Chris; Björkqvist, Maria; Warner, Thomas T

    2016-01-01

    Huntington's disease patients have a number of peripheral manifestations suggestive of metabolic and endocrine abnormalities. We, therefore, investigated a number of metabolic factors in a 24-hour study of Huntington's disease gene carriers (premanifest and moderate stage II/III) and controls. Control (n = 15), premanifest (n = 14) and stage II/III (n = 13) participants were studied with blood sampling over a 24-hour period. A battery of clinical tests including neurological rating and function scales were performed. Visceral and subcutaneous adipose distribution was measured using magnetic resonance imaging. We quantified fasting baseline concentrations of glucose, insulin, cholesterol, triglycerides, lipoprotein (a), fatty acids, amino acids, lactate and osteokines. Leptin and ghrelin were quantified in fasting samples and after a standardised meal. We assessed glucose, insulin, growth hormone and cortisol concentrations during a prolonged oral glucose tolerance test. We found no highly significant differences in carbohydrate, protein or lipid metabolism markers between healthy controls, premanifest and stage II/III Huntington's disease subjects. For some markers (osteoprotegerin, tyrosine, lysine, phenylalanine and arginine) there is a suggestion (p values between 0.02 and 0.05) that levels are higher in patients with premanifest HD, but not moderate HD. However, given the large number of statistical tests performed interpretation of these findings must be cautious. Contrary to previous studies that showed altered levels of metabolic markers in patients with Huntington's disease, our study did not demonstrate convincing evidence of abnormalities in any of the markers examined. Our analyses were restricted to Huntington's disease patients not taking neuroleptics, anti-depressants or other medication affecting metabolic pathways. Even with the modest sample sizes studied, the lack of highly significant results, despite many being tested, suggests that the majority

  2. [Schizophrenia-like psychotic symptoms in a patient with confirmed Huntington's disease: a case report].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grabski, Bartosz; Siwek, Marcin; Dudek, Dominika; Jaeschke, Rafał; Banaszkiewicz, Krzysztof

    2012-01-01

    The aim of this study is to discuss diagnostic and therapeutic challenges in a patient with a mutation in the gene responsible for the development of Huntington's disease (HD) who presented schizophrenia-like psychotic symptoms. A case report. A 35-year old man with genetically-confirmed HD who developed significant behavioural changes that occurred many years prior to the outbreak of choreic movements. There was a close temporal relationship between an onset of discrete involuntary movements and schizophrenia-like psychotic symptoms (delusions of persecution, reference and bodily change, as well as auditory pseudohallucinations of threatening and commanding voices). At admission (subsequently to a suicidal attempt) he was ambivalent, ambitendent and--periodically--agitated. Pharmacotherapeutic regime of olanzapine (20 mg qd) and amisulpride (400 mg qd) led to a gradual improvement of the patient's mental status. HD should always be included in the differential diagnosis of psychotic disorders. Patients with HD can exhibit various psychopathological symptoms (including psychotic ones) prior to the outbreak of movement symptoms. Both neurologists and psychiatrists should take part in the therapeutic process. Atypical antipsychotics seem to be effective in the discussed group of patients (although the evidence body consists mainly of scarce, low-quality data).

  3. Euthanasia and advance directives in Huntington's disease: qualitative analysis of interviews with patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Booij, Suzanne J; Rödig, Verena; Engberts, Dick P; Tibben, Aad; Roos, Raymund A C

    2013-01-01

    In the literature there are few reports on euthanasia or physician-assisted suicide (PAS) or other matters concerning the end-of-life in patients with Huntington's disease (HD), although clinical experience suggests these issues do arise. To obtain in-depth information about patients' thoughts on and attitudes to euthanasia, PAS and the use of advance directives in HD. To assess the difficulties patients encounter when thinking about end-of-life wishes. Semi-structured in-depth interviews with 14 unselected HD patients from our out-patient clinic based on a topic list. Qualitative analysis of the interviews based on grounded theory. We identified three patterns in our group of respondents: patients with distinct wishes, with general wishes and ideas and patients with no wishes. The most important frame of reference regarding end-of-life wishes in HD patients or known gene carriers is the experience with an affected parent. Family is important when thinking about the end of life and advance directives, even more so than the patient's physician. Knowledge about the (requirements of) law is limited. The majority of interviewees expressed some kind of wish regarding end of life, probably more than they had revealed to their physician, but were sometimes hesitant to discuss it. Knowledge on how to deal with wishes, advance directives and response shift is limited. In general, patients underestimate the requirement for sound professional support when considering euthanasia or PAS and the value of an advance directive. In an attempt to improve knowledge and communication about end-of-life issues, physicians should ask the patient directly about their wishes.

  4. Correlation between relaxometry and diffusion tensor imaging in the globus pallidus of Huntington's disease patients.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Syka

    Full Text Available Huntington's disease (HD is an inherited neurodegenerative disorder with progressive impairment of motor, behavioral and cognitive functions. The clinical features of HD are closely related to the degeneration of the basal ganglia, predominantly the striatum. The main striatal output structure, the globus pallidus, strongly accumulates metalloprotein-bound iron, which was recently shown to influence the diffusion tensor scalar values. To test the hypothesis that this effect dominates in the iron-rich basal ganglia of HD patients, we examined the globus pallidus using DTI and T2 relaxometry sequences. Quantitative magnetic resonance (MR, clinical and genetic data (number of CAG repeats were obtained from 14 HD patients. MR parameters such as the T2 relaxation rate (RR, fractional anisotropy (FA and mean diffusivity (MD were analysed. A positive correlation was found between RR and FA (R2=0.84, between CAG and RR (R2=0.59 and between CAG and FA (R2=0.44. A negative correlation was observed between RR and MD (R2=0.66. A trend towards correlation between CAG and MD was noted. No correlation between MR and clinical parameters was found. Our results indicate that especially magnetic resonance FA measurements in the globus pallidus of HD patients may be strongly affected by metalloprotein-bound iron accumulation.

  5. A novel mitochondrial tRNAAla gene variant causes chronic progressive external ophthalmoplegia in a patient with Huntington disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Massimiliano Filosto

    2016-03-01

    Mitochondrial involvement is an emerging key determinant in the pathogenesis of Huntington disease and it is well known that mutant huntingtin influences the mitochondrial respiratory complexes II and III. A synergist effect of the HTT and MTTA mutations on respiratory chain function may be hypothesized in our patient and should be regarded as a spur for further studies on the mtDNA/HTT reciprocal interactions.

  6. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study of latrepirdine in patients with mild to moderate Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND Latrepirdine is an orally administered experimental small molecule that was initially developed as an antihistamine and subsequently was shown to stabilize mitochondrial membranes and function, which might be impaired in Huntington disease. OBJECTIVE To determine the effect of latrepirdine on cognition and global function in patients with mild to moderate Huntington disease. DESIGN Randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study. SETTING Sixty-four research centers in Australia, Europe, and North America. PATIENTS Four hundred three patients with mild to moderate Huntington disease and baseline cognitive impairment (Mini-Mental State Examination score, 10-26). INTERVENTION Latrepirdine (20 mg) vs matching placebo administered orally 3 times daily for 26 weeks. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES The co-primary outcome measures were cognition as measured by the change in Mini-Mental State Examination score from baseline to week 26 and global function at week 26 as measured by the Clinician Interview-Based Impression of Change, plus carer interview, which ranges from 1 (marked improvement) to 7 (marked worsening). Secondary efficacy outcome measures included behavior, daily function, motor function, and safety. RESULTS The mean change in Mini-Mental State Examination score among participants randomized to latrepirdine (1.5-point improvement) did not differ significantly from that among participants randomized to placebo (1.3-point improvement) (P=.39). Similarly, the distribution of the Clinician Interview-Based Impression of Change, plus carer interview did not differ significantly among those randomized to latrepirdine compared with placebo (P=.84). No significant treatment effects were detected on the secondary efficacy outcome measures. The incidence of adverse events was similar between those randomized to latrepirdine (68.5%) and placebo (68.0%). CONCLUSION In patients with mild to moderate Huntington disease and cognitive impairment, treatment with

  7. Huntington Disease: Molecular Diagnostics Approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bastepe, Murat; Xin, Winnie

    2015-10-06

    Huntington disease (HD) is caused by expansion of a CAG trinucleotide repeat in the first exon of the Huntingtin (HTT) gene. Molecular testing of Huntington disease for diagnostic confirmation and disease prediction requires detection of the CAG repeat expansion. There are three main types of HD genetic testing: (1) diagnostic testing to confirm or rule out disease, (2) presymptomatic testing to determine whether an at-risk individual inherited the expanded allele, and (3) prenatal testing to determine whether the fetus has inherited the expanded allele. This unit includes protocols that describe the complementary use of polymerase chain reactions (PCR) and Southern blot hybridization to accurately measure the CAG trinucleotide repeat size and interpret the test results. In addition, an indirect linkage analysis that does not reveal the unwanted parental HD status in a prenatal testing will also be discussed. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

  8. Prevalence of Huntington's disease gene CAG trinucleotide repeat alleles in patients with bipolar disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramos, Eliana Marisa; Gillis, Tammy; Mysore, Jayalakshmi S; Lee, Jong-Min; Alonso, Isabel; Gusella, James F; Smoller, Jordan W; Sklar, Pamela; MacDonald, Marcy E; Perlis, Roy H

    2015-06-01

    Huntington's disease is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by motor, cognitive, and psychiatric symptoms that are caused by huntingtin gene (HTT) CAG trinucleotide repeat alleles of 36 or more units. A greater than expected prevalence of incompletely penetrant HTT CAG repeat alleles observed among individuals diagnosed with major depressive disorder raises the possibility that another mood disorder, bipolar disorder, could likewise be associated with Huntington's disease. We assessed the distribution of HTT CAG repeat alleles in a cohort of individuals with bipolar disorder. HTT CAG allele sizes from 2,229 Caucasian individuals diagnosed with DSM-IV bipolar disorder were compared to allele sizes in 1,828 control individuals from multiple cohorts. We found that HTT CAG repeat alleles > 35 units were observed in only one of 4,458 chromosomes from individuals with bipolar disorder, compared to three of 3,656 chromosomes from control subjects. These findings do not support an association between bipolar disorder and Huntington's disease. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  9. Examination of Huntington's disease in a Chinese family.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Mingxia; Li, Xiaogai; Wu, Sanyun; Shen, Ji; Tu, Jiancheng

    2014-02-15

    We report brain imaging and genetic diagnosis in a family from Wuhan, China, with a history of Huntington's disease. Among 17 family members across three generations, four patients (II2, II6, III5, and III9) show typical Huntington's disease, involuntary dance-like movements. Magnetic resonance imaging found lateral ventricular atrophy in three members (II2, II6, and III5). Moreover, genetic analysis identified abnormally amplified CAG sequence repeats (> 40) in two members (III5 and III9). Among borderline cases, with clinical symptoms and brain imaging features of Huntington's disease, two cases were identified (II2 and II6), but shown by mutation analysis for CAG expansions in the important transcript 15 gene, to be non-Huntington's disease. Our findings suggest that clinical diagnosis of Huntington's disease requires a combination of clinical symptoms, radiological changes, and genetic diagnosis.

  10. Effects of endurance training on skeletal muscle mitochondrial function in Huntington disease patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, Sandro Manuel; Gehrig, Saskia Maria; Petersen, Jens A; Frese, Sebastian; Mihaylova, Violeta; Ligon-Auer, Maria; Khmara, Natalia; Nuoffer, Jean-Marc; Schaller, André; Lundby, Carsten; Toigo, Marco; Jung, Hans H

    2017-12-19

    Mitochondrial dysfunction may represent a pathogenic factor in Huntington disease (HD). Physical exercise leads to enhanced mitochondrial function in healthy participants. However, data on effects of physical exercise on HD skeletal muscle remains scarce. We aimed at investigating adaptations of the skeletal muscle mitochondria to endurance training in HD patients. Thirteen HD patients and 11 healthy controls completed 26 weeks of endurance training. Before and after the training phase muscle biopsies were obtained from M. vastus lateralis. Mitochondrial respiratory chain complex activities, mitochondrial respiratory capacity, capillarization, and muscle fiber type distribution were determined from muscle samples. Citrate synthase activity increased during the training intervention in the whole cohort (P = 0.006). There was no group x time interaction for citrate synthase activity during the training intervention (P = 0.522). Complex III (P = 0.008), Complex V (P = 0.043), and succinate cytochrome c reductase (P = 0.008) activities increased in HD patients and controls by endurance training. An increase in mass-specific mitochondrial respiratory capacity was present in HD patients during the endurance training intervention. Overall capillary-to-fiber ratio increased in HD patients by 8.4% and in healthy controls by 6.4% during the endurance training intervention. Skeletal muscle mitochondria of HD patients are equally responsive to an endurance-training stimulus as in healthy controls. Endurance training is a safe and feasible option to enhance indices of energy metabolism in skeletal muscle of HD patients and may represent a potential therapeutic approach to delay the onset and/or progression of muscular dysfunction. ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01879267 . Registered May 24, 2012.

  11. Thalamic metabolic abnormalities in patients with Huntington's disease measured by magnetic resonance spectroscopy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Casseb, R.F.; Castellano, G., E-mail: gabriela@ifi.unicamp.br [Cooperacao Interinstitucional de Apoio a Pesquisas sobre o Cerebro (Programa CInAPCe), Sao Paulo, SP (Brazil); Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP), SP (Brazil). Instituto de Fisica Gleb Wataghin. Dept. de Raios Cosmicos e Cronologia; D' Abreu, A.; Cendes, F. [Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP), SP (Brazil). Dept. de Neurologia. Lab. de Neuroimagem; Cooperacao Interinstitucional de Apoio a Pesquisas sobre o Cerebro (Programa CInAPCe), Sao Paulo, SP (Brazil); Ruocco, H.H. [Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP), SP (Brazil). Fac. de Ciencias Medicas. Dept. de Neurologia. Lab. de Neuroimagem; Lopes-Cendes, I., E-mail: seixas.fk@gmail.com [Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP), SP (Brazil). Fac. de Ciencias Medicas. Dept. de Genetica Medica; Cooperacao Interinstitucional de Apoio a Pesquisas sobre o Cerebro (Programa CInAPCe), Sao Paulo, SP (Brazil)

    2013-08-15

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a neurologic disorder that is not completely understood; its fundamental physiological mechanisms and chemical effects remain somewhat unclear. Among these uncertainties, we can highlight information about the concentrations of brain metabolites, which have been widely discussed. Concentration differences in affected, compared to healthy, individuals could lead to the development of useful tools for evaluating the progression of disease, or to the advance of investigations of different/alternative treatments. The aim of this study was to compare the thalamic concentration of metabolites in HD patients and healthy individuals using magnetic resonance spectroscopy. We used a 2.0-Tesla magnetic field, repetition time of 1500 ms, and echo time of 135 ms. Spectra from 40 adult HD patients and 26 control subjects were compared. Quantitative analysis was performed using the LCModel method. There were statistically significant differences between HD patients and controls in the concentrations of N-acetylaspartate+N-acetylaspartylglutamate (NAA+NAAG; t-test, P,0.001), and glycerophosphocholine+phosphocholine (GPC+PCh; t-test, P=0.001) relative to creatine+phosphocreatine (Cr+PCr). The NAA+NAAG/Cr+PCr ratio was decreased by 9% and GPC+PCh/Cr+PCr increased by 17% in patients compared with controls. There were no correlations between the concentration ratios and clinical features. Although these results could be caused by T1 and T2 changes, rather than variations in metabolite concentrations given the short repetition time and long echo time values used, our findings point to thalamic dysfunction, corroborating prior evidence. (author)

  12. Somatic instability of the expanded allele of IT-15 from patients with Huntington disease

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stine, O.C.; Pleasant, N.; Ross, C.A. [Johns Hopkins Univ., Baltimore, MD (United States)] [and others

    1994-09-01

    Huntington`s disease (HD) is an inherited neurodegenerative disorder caused by an expanded trinucleotide repeat in the gene IT-15. Although the expanded allele of IT-15 is unstable during gametogenesis, particularly, spermatogenesis, it is not clear if there is somatic stability. There are two reports of stability and one of instability. In order to test whether somatic instability occurs in the expansions found in HD, we have compared amplified genomic DNA isolated from either blood or distinct regions of autopsied brains of persons with Huntington disease. We find that somatic variation occurs in at least two ways. First, in cases with longer repeats (n > 47), the cerebellum often (8 of 9 cases) has a smaller number of repeats (2 to 10 less) than other tested regions of the brain. The larger the expanded allele, the larger the reduction in size of the repeat in the cerebellum (r=0.94, p<0.0001, df=12). Second, regardless of the repeat size, the number of amplification products from genomic DNA isolated from the cerebellum is smaller than that from genomic DNA from other forebrain regions such as the dorsal parietal cortex. As the length of the expanded allele increases, the number of amplification products increase in either tissue (r=0.86, p<0.001, df=12). Therefore our data demonstrates somatic instability especially for longer repeats.

  13. Revisiting the neuropsychiatry of Huntington's disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonio Lucio Teixeira

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Huntington's disease (HD is an autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disease classified under the choreas. Besides motor symptoms, HD is marked by cognitive and behavioral symptoms, impacting patients' functional capacity. The progression of cognitive impairment and neuropsychiatric symptoms occur in parallel with neurodegeneration. The nature of these symptoms is very dynamic, and the major clinical challenges include executive dysfunction, apathy, depression and irritability. Herein, we provide a focused updated review on the cognitive and psychiatric features of HD.

  14. RAN Translation in Huntington Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bañez-Coronel, Monica; Ayhan, Fatma; Tarabochia, Alex D; Zu, Tao; Perez, Barbara A; Tusi, Solaleh Khoramian; Pletnikova, Olga; Borchelt, David R; Ross, Christopher A; Margolis, Russell L; Yachnis, Anthony T; Troncoso, Juan C; Ranum, Laura P W

    2015-11-18

    Huntington disease (HD) is caused by a CAG ⋅ CTG expansion in the huntingtin (HTT) gene. While most research has focused on the HTT polyGln-expansion protein, we demonstrate that four additional, novel, homopolymeric expansion proteins (polyAla, polySer, polyLeu, and polyCys) accumulate in HD human brains. These sense and antisense repeat-associated non-ATG (RAN) translation proteins accumulate most abundantly in brain regions with neuronal loss, microglial activation and apoptosis, including caudate/putamen, white matter, and, in juvenile-onset cases, also the cerebellum. RAN protein accumulation and aggregation are length dependent, and individual RAN proteins are toxic to neural cells independent of RNA effects. These data suggest RAN proteins contribute to HD and that therapeutic strategies targeting both sense and antisense genes may be required for efficacy in HD patients. This is the first demonstration that RAN proteins are expressed across an expansion located in an open reading frame and suggests RAN translation may also contribute to other polyglutamine diseases. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Genetics Home Reference: Huntington disease-like syndrome

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Twitter Home Health Conditions Huntington disease-like syndrome Huntington disease-like syndrome Printable PDF Open All Close ... collapse boxes. Description As its name suggests, a Huntington disease -like (HDL) syndrome is a condition that ...

  16. Qualitative study on the placement of Huntington disease patients in a psychiatric hospital: perceptions of Maltese nurses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scerri, Josianne; Cassar, Rebecca

    2013-12-01

    Individuals with adult or juvenile Huntington disease can be cared for within psychiatric hospitals. In this paper, nurses' perceptions about the appropriateness of a psychiatric setting for these patients were explored. Semistructured interviews were conducted with 10 Maltese nurses involved in the care of these individuals. Their responses were analyzed using thematic analysis. Three main themes were identified from this study: (i) Huntington disease is not a mental illness; (ii) the lack of specialized staff and equipment within a psychiatric setting; and (iii) a need for alternative care options. The findings provide an insight into the perceptions of nurses, as they play a key role in the care and management of individuals with Huntington disease in a psychiatric setting. The findings demonstrated the need to provide alternative residential options in the community, and to improve the care and support provided both within psychiatric hospitals and the community through staff education and the provision of necessary facilities and equipment. © 2013 Wiley Publishing Asia Pty Ltd.

  17. Utilization of hospice services in a population of patients with Huntington's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Margaret O; Frank, Samuel; Mendlik, Matthew; Casarett, David

    2017-09-12

    Although the early and middle stages of Huntington's Disease (HD) and its complications have been well described, less is known about the course of late-stage illness. In particular, little is known about the population of patients who enroll in hospice. Our goal is to describe the characteristics of patients with HD who enrolled in hospice. Retrospective cohort study of electronic medical record data from 12 not-for-profit hospices in the United States from 2008 to 2012. Of 164,032 patients admitted to these hospices, 101 (0.06%) had a primary diagnosis of HD. Their median age was 57 (IQR: 48-65) and 53 (52.5%) were female. Most patients were cared for by a spouse (n=36, 36.6%) or adult child (n=20, 19.8%). At the time of admission, most patients were living either at home (n=39, 38.6%) or in a nursing home (n=41, 40.6%). All were either bedbound or could ambulate only with assistance. The most common symptom reported during enrollment in hospice was pain (n=34, 33.7%) followed by anxiety (n=30, 29.7%), nausea (n=18, 17.8%) and dyspnea (n=10, 9.9%). Patients had a median length of stay in hospice of 42 days, which was significantly longer than that of other hospice patients in the sample (17 days) p<0.001. Of 101 patients who were admitted to hospice, 73 died, 11 were still enrolled at the time of data analysis, and 17 left hospice either because they no longer met eligibility criteria (n=14, 13.7%) or because they decided to seek treatment for other medical conditions (n=3, 3.0%). Of the 73 patients who died while on hospice, most died either in a nursing home (n=29; 40%) or a hospital (n=27; 37%). Seventeen patients (23%) died at home. No patient that started in a facility died at home. Patients with HD are admitted to hospice at a younger age compared to other patients (57 versus 76 years old), but have a significant symptom burden and limited functional status. Although hospice care emphasizes the importance of helping patients to remain in their homes, only a

  18. Tetrabenazine: the first approved drug for the treatment of chorea in US patients with Huntington disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samuel Frank

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Samuel FrankBoston University School of Medicine, Boston, Massachusetts, USAAbstract: Huntington disease (HD is a dominantly inherited progressive neurological disease characterized by chorea, an involuntary brief movement that tends to flow between body regions. HD is typically diagnosed based on clinical findings in the setting of a family history and may be confirmed with genetic testing. Predictive testing is available to those at risk, but only experienced clinicians should perform the counseling and testing. Multiple areas of the brain degenerate mainly involving the neurotransmitters dopamine, glutamate, and γ-aminobutyric acid. Although pharmacotherapies theoretically target these neurotransmitters, few well-conducted trials for symptomatic or neuroprotective interventions yielded positive results. Tetrabenazine (TBZ is a dopamine-depleting agent that may be one of the more effective agents for reducing chorea, although it has a risk of potentially serious adverse effects. Some newer antipsychotic agents, such as olanzapine and aripiprazole, may have adequate efficacy with a more favorable adverse-effect profile than older antipsychotic agents for treating chorea and psychosis. This review will address the epidemiology and diagnosis of HD as background for understanding potential pharmacological treatment options. Because TBZ is the only US Food and Drug Administration-approved medication in the United States for HD, the focus of this review will be on its pharmacology, efficacy, safety, and practical uses. There are no current treatments to change the course of HD, but education and symptomatic therapies can be effective tools for clinicians to use with patients and families affected by HD.Keywords: dopamine-depleting agent, neuroleptics, tetrabenazine

  19. Cognitive and autonomic dysfunction in presymptomatic and early Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kobal, Jan; Melik, Ziva; Cankar, Ksenija; Strucl, Martin

    2014-06-01

    Huntington's disease is characterized by disorders of movement, cognition and behavior. Individuals with Huntington's disease display aberrant changes in the autonomic nervous system that are detected even before the onset of other symptoms. Subtle cognitive dysfunction may start before other clinical manifestations. The aim of the present study was to investigate the autonomic nervous system response to mental arithmetic and the relationship between the autonomic and cognitive/motor function in presymptomatic and early Huntington's disease. We examined 15 presymptomatic Huntington's disease gene carriers (PHD), 15 early Huntington's disease patients (EHD) and 30 healthy controls. PHD and EHD groups were determined according to Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS) motor score. ECG, heart rate, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, and cutaneous laser Doppler flux were measured during rest and during a simple mental arithmetic test. UHDRS cognitive test battery was applied to determine cognitive dysfunction. During mental arithmetic, the heart rate of PHD/EHD increased significantly less than that of controls. Decreased microvascular response to mental arithmetic was found in EHD. Significant correlations for the PHD/EHD group were found between laser Doppler flux response and Symbol Digit Modalities Test score, and between laser Doppler flux response and UHDRS motor score. It seems that central autonomic dysregulation of cardiovascular system in Huntington's disease goes along with the degeneration of other central neuronal systems. This finding is relevant as it could enable simple and noninvasive testing of disease progression.

  20. Huntington disease: pathogenesis and treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dayalu, Praveen; Albin, Roger L

    2015-02-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is an autosomal dominant inherited neurodegenerative disease characterized by progressive motor, behavioral, and cognitive decline, culminating in death. It is caused by an expanded CAG repeat in the huntingtin gene. Even years before symptoms become overt, mutation carriers show subtle but progressive striatal and cerebral white matter atrophy by volumetric MRI. Although there is currently no direct treatment of HD, management options are available for several symptoms. A better understanding of HD pathogenesis, and more sophisticated clinical trials using newer biomarkers, may lead to meaningful treatments. This article reviews the current knowledge of HD pathogenesis and treatment. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Respiratory muscle training on pulmonary and swallowing function in patients with Huntington's disease: a pilot randomised controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reyes, Alvaro; Cruickshank, Travis; Nosaka, Kazunori; Ziman, Mel

    2015-10-01

    To examine the effects of 4-month of respiratory muscle training on pulmonary and swallowing function, exercise capacity and dyspnoea in manifest patients with Huntington's disease. A pilot randomised controlled trial. Home based training program. Eighteen manifest Huntington's disease patients with a positive genetic test and clinically verified disease expression, were randomly assigned to control group (n=9) and training group (n=9). Both groups received home-based inspiratory (5 sets of 5 repetitions) and expiratory (5 sets of 5 repetitions) muscle training 6 times a week for 4 months. The control group used a fixed resistance of 9 centimeters of water, and the training group used a progressively increased resistance from 30% to 75% of each patient's maximum respiratory pressure. Spirometric indices, maximum inspiratory pressure, maximum expiratory pressure, six minutes walk test, dyspnoea, water-swallowing test and swallow quality of life questionnaire were assessed before, at 2 and 4 months after training. The magnitude of increases in maximum inspiratory (d=2.9) and expiratory pressures (d=1.5), forced vital capacity (d=0.8), forced expiratory volume in 1 second (d=0.9) and peak expiratory flow (d=0.8) was substantially greater for the training group in comparison to the control group. Changes in swallowing function, dyspnoea and exercise capacity were small (d ≤ 0.5) for both groups without substantial differences between groups. A home-based respiratory muscle training program appeared to be beneficial to improve pulmonary function in manifest Huntington's disease patients but provided small effects on swallowing function, dyspnoea and exercise capacity. © The Author(s) 2015.

  2. Plasma melatonin is reduced in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalliolia, Eirini; Silajdžić, Edina; Nambron, Rajasree; Hill, Nathan R; Doshi, Anisha; Frost, Chris; Watt, Hilary; Hindmarsh, Peter; Björkqvist, Maria; Warner, Thomas T

    2014-10-01

    This study was undertaken to determine whether the production of melatonin, a hormone regulating sleep in relation to the light/dark cycle, is altered in Huntington's disease. We analyzed the circadian rhythm of melatonin in a 24-hour study of cohorts of control, premanifest, and stage II/III Huntington's disease subjects. The mean and acrophase melatonin concentrations were significantly reduced in stage II/III Huntington's disease subjects compared with controls. We also observed a nonsignificant trend toward reduced mean and acrophase melatonin in premanifest Huntington's disease subjects. Onset of melatonin rise was significantly more temporally spread in both premanifest and stage II/III Huntington's disease subjects compared with controls. A nonsignificant trend also was seen for reduced pulsatile secretion of melatonin. Melatonin concentrations are reduced in Huntington's disease. Altered melatonin patterns may provide an explanation for disrupted sleep and circadian behavior in Huntington's disease, and represent a biomarker for disease state. Melatonin therapy may help the sleep disorders seen in Huntington's disease. © © 2014 The Authors. Movement Disorders published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society.

  3. Increased prothrombin, apolipoprotein A-IV, and haptoglobin in the cerebrospinal fluid of patients with Huntington's disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yen-Chu Huang

    Full Text Available Huntington's disease (HD is a progressive neurodegenerative disease caused by an unstable CAG trinucleotide repeat expansion. The need for biomarkers of onset and progression in HD is imperative, since currently reliable outcome measures are lacking. We used two-dimensional electrophoresis and mass spectrometry to analyze the proteome profiles in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF of 6 pairs of HD patients and controls. Prothrombin, apolipoprotein A-IV (Apo A-IV and haptoglobin were elevated in CSF of the HD patients in comparison with the controls. We used western blot as a semi-quantified measurement for prothrombin and Apo A-IV, as well as enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA for measurement of haptoglobin, in 9 HD patients and 9 controls. The albumin quotient (Qalb, a marker of blood-brain barrier (BBB function, was not different between the HD patients and the controls. The ratios of CSF prothrombin/albumin (prothrombin/Alb and Apo A-IV/albumin (Apo A-IV/Alb, and haptoglobin level were significantly elevated in HD. The ratio of CSF prothrombin/Alb significantly correlated with the disease severity assessed by Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS. The results implicate that increased CSF prothrombin, Apo A-IV, and haptoglobin may be involved in pathogenesis of HD and may serve as potential biomarkers for HD.

  4. ORIGINAL ARTICLES Huntington's disease: Genetic heterogeneity ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    2008-03-01

    Mar 1, 2008 ... George Huntington's description of Huntington's disease. (HD) in 1872 (at the age of 22 years) remains the basic pillar of diagnosis: 'A hereditary chorea, tendency to insanity and suicide and its manifesting itself as a grave disease in adulthood'.1 HD is a progressive autosomal dominant disorder ...

  5. The V471A polymorphism in autophagy-related gene ATG7 modifies age at onset specifically in Italian Huntington disease patients

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Metzger, Silke; Walter, Carolin; Riess, Olaf

    2013-01-01

    The cause of Huntington disease (HD) is a polyglutamine repeat expansion of more than 36 units in the huntingtin protein, which is inversely correlated with the age at onset of the disease. However, additional genetic factors are believed to modify the course and the age at onset of HD. Recently......, we identified the V471A polymorphism in the autophagy-related gene ATG7, a key component of the autophagy pathway that plays an important role in HD pathogenesis, to be associated with the age at onset in a large group of European Huntington disease patients. To confirm this association in a second...... independent patient cohort, we analysed the ATG7 V471A polymorphism in additional 1,464 European HD patients of the "REGISTRY" cohort from the European Huntington Disease Network (EHDN). In the entire REGISTRY cohort we could not confirm a modifying effect of the ATG7 V471A polymorphism. However, analysing...

  6. Behavioral variant of frontotemporal dementia mimicking Huntington's disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, T Rune; Bruhn, Peter; Nielsen, Jørgen E

    2010-01-01

    movements are usually not seen in FTD.Two patients with involuntary choreoathetoid movements but otherwise presenting a bv-FTD-phenotype were referred and Huntington's disease (HD) was suspected. The diagnoses of bv-FTD were made after comprehensive assessment and exclusion of other diagnoses, including HD...... and Huntington's disease-like (HDL) phenotypes. Although a definite diagnosis will require neuropathological confirmation, we conclude that a HDL phenotype may be part of the clinical spectrum of the bv-FTD phenotype....

  7. On the neurolinguistic nature of language abnormalities in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wallesch, C W; Fehrenbach, R A

    1988-03-01

    Spontaneous language of 18 patients suffering from Huntington's disease and 15 dysarthric controls suffering from Friedreich's ataxia were investigated. In addition, language functions in various modalities were assessed with the Aachen Aphasia Test (AAT). The Huntington patients exhibited deficits in the syntactical complexity of spontaneous speech and in the Token Test, confrontation naming, and language comprehension subtests of the AAT, which are interpreted as resulting from their dementia. Errors affecting word access mechanisms and production of syntactical structures as such were not encountered.

  8. Huntington Disease in Asia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miao Xu

    2015-01-01

    Conclusions: The lower epidemiology in Asians can be partly explained by the less cytosine-adenine-guanine repeats, different haplotypes, and CCG polymorphisms. For the physicians, atypical clinical profiles such as the initial symptom of ataxia, movement abnormalities of Parkinsonism, dystonia, or tics need to be paid more attention to and suggest gene testing if necessary. Moreover, some pathogenesis studies may help progress some new advanced treatments. The clinicians in Asian especially in China should promote the usage of genetic testing and put more effects in rehabilitation, palliative care, and offer comfort of patients and their families. The unified HD rating scale also needs to be popularized in Asia to assist in evaluating the progression of HD.

  9. Ethical issues and Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kromberg, Jennifer G R; Wessels, Tina-Marié

    2013-10-11

    The practice of genetic counselling gives rise to many ethical dilemmas, and counsellors need to be familiar with the principles of biomedical ethics. The primary principles include respect for autonomy, beneficence, non-maleficence and justice. A case of identical twins at 50% risk for Huntington's disease, in which only one twin sought predictive testing for this dominantly inherited disease, created several ethical dilemmas. Another case where predictive testing was carried out on two young children, at high risk, by a laboratory at the request of an adoption agency and a doctor, with a view to giving information to the foster parents, also posed many ethical conundrums for the counsellor. The ethical issues that arose in these cases are discussed in this paper. 

  10. Striatal hypometabolism in premanifest and manifest Huntington's disease patients

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lopez-Mora, Diego Alfonso; Camacho, Valle; Fernandez, Alejandro; Montes, Alberto; Carrio, Ignasi [Autonomous University of Barcelona, Nuclear Medicine Department, Hospital Sant Pau, Barcelona (Spain); Perez-Perez, Jesus; Martinez-Horta, Sauel; Kulisevsky, Jaime [Autonomous University of Barcelona, Movement Disorders Unit, Neurology Department, Hospital Sant Pau, Barcelona (Spain); Sampedro, Frederic [University of Barcelona, Barcelona (Spain); Lozano-Martinez, Gloria Andrea; Gomez-Anson, Beatriz [Autonomous University of Barcelona, Neuroradiology, Radiology Department, Hospital Sant Pau, Barcelona (Spain)

    2016-11-15

    To assess metabolic changes in cerebral {sup 18}F-FDG PET/CT in premanifest and manifest Huntington's disease (HD) subjects compared to a control group and to correlate {sup 18}F-FDG uptake patterns with different disease stages. Thirty-three gene-expanded carriers (Eight males; mean age: 43 y/o; CAG > 39) were prospectively included. Based on the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale Total Motor Score and the Total Functional Capacity, subjects were classified as premanifest (preHD = 15) and manifest (mHD = 18). Estimated time disease-onset was calculated using the Langbehn formula, which allowed classifying preHD as far-to (preHD-A) and close-to (PreHD-B) disease-onset. Eighteen properly matched participants were included as a control group (CG). All subjects underwent brain {sup 18}F-FDG PET/CT and MRI. {sup 18}F-FDG PET/CT were initially assessed by two nuclear medicine physicians identifying qualitative metabolic changes in the striatum. Quantitative analysis was performed using SPM8 with gray matter atrophy correction using the BPM toolbox. Visual analysis showed a marked striatal hypometabolism in mHD. A normal striatal distribution of {sup 18}F-FDG uptake was observed for most of the preHD subjects. Quantitative analysis showed a significant striatal hypometabolism in mHD subjects compared to CG (p < 0.001 uncorrected, k = 50 voxels). In both preHD groups we observed a significant striatal hypometabolism with respect to CG (p < 0.001 uncorrected, k = 50 voxels). In mHD subjects we observed a significant striatal hypometabolism with respect to both preHD groups (p < 0.001 uncorrected, k = 50 voxels). {sup 18}F-FDG PET/CT might be a helpful tool to identify patterns of glucose metabolism in the striatum across the stages of HD and might be relevant in assessing the clinical status of gene-expanded HD carriers due to the fact that dysfunctional glucose metabolism begins at early preHD stages of the disease. {sup 18}F-FDG PET/CT appears as a

  11. Personality Traits in Huntington's Disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Ida Unmack; Mortensen, Erik Lykke; Vinther-Jensen, Tua

    2016-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is associated with risk for developing psychiatric symptoms. Vulnerability or resilience to psychiatric symptoms may be associated with personality traits. This exploratory study, aimed to investigate personality traits in a large cohort of HD carriers and at risk gene......-expansion negative individuals (HD non-carriers), exploring whether carrying the HD gene or growing up in an HD family influences personality traits. Forty-seven HD carriers, Thirty-nine HD non-carriers, and 121 healthy controls answered the Danish version of the revised NEO personality inventory. Comparisons...... symptoms. Our findings suggest that, there is no direct effect of the HD gene on personality traits, but that personality assessment may be relevant to use when identifying individuals from HD families who are vulnerable to develop psychiatric symptoms....

  12. Riluzole protects Huntington disease patients from brain glucose hypometabolism and grey matter volume loss and increases production of neurotrophins

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Squitieri, Ferdinando; Orobello, Sara; Cannella, Milena; Martino, Tiziana [IRCCS Neuromed, Neurogenetics Unit and Centre for Rare Disease, Pozzilli (Italy); Romanelli, Pantaleo [IRCCS Neuromed, Department of Neurosurgery, Pozzilli (Italy); Giovacchini, Giampiero; Ciarmiello, Andrea [S. Andrea Hospital, Unit of Nuclear Medicine, La Spezia (Italy); Frati, Luigi [University ' ' Sapienza' ' , Department of Experimental Medicine, Rome (Italy); Mansi, Luigi [Second University of Naples, Department of Nuclear Medicine, Naples (Italy)

    2009-07-15

    Huntington disease (HD) mutation increases gain-of-toxic functions contributing to glutamate-mediated excitotoxicity. Riluzole interferes with glutamatergic neurotransmission, thereby reducing excitotoxicity, enhancing neurite formation in damaged motoneurons and increasing serum concentrations of BDNF, a brain cortex neurotrophin protecting striatal neurons from degeneration. We investigated metabolic and volumetric differences in distinct brain areas between 11 riluzole-treated and 12 placebo-treated patients by MRI and {sup 18}F-fluoro-2-deoxy-d-glucose (FDG) PET scanning, according to fully automated protocols. We also investigated the influence of riluzole on peripheral growth factor blood levels. Placebo-treated patients showed significantly greater proportional volume loss of grey matter and decrease in metabolic FDG uptake than patients treated with riluzole in all cortical areas (p<0.05). The decreased rate of metabolic FDG uptake correlated with worsening clinical scores in placebo-treated patients, compared to those who were treated with riluzole. The progressive decrease in metabolic FDG uptake observed in the frontal, parietal and occipital cortex correlated linearly with the severity of motor scores calculated by Unified Huntington Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS-I) in placebo-treated patients. Similarly, the rate of metabolic changes in the frontal and temporal areas of the brain cortex correlated linearly with worsening behavioural scores calculated by UHDRS-III in the placebo-treated patients. Finally, BDNF and transforming growth factor beta-1 serum levels were significantly higher in patients treated with riluzole. The linear correlation between decreased metabolic FDG uptake and worsening clinical scores in the placebo-treated patients suggests that FDG-PET may be a valuable procedure to assess brain markers of HD. (orig.)

  13. High Protein Diet and Huntington's Disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chiung-Mei Chen

    Full Text Available Huntington's disease (HD is a neurodegenerative disorder caused by the huntingtin (HTT gene with expanded CAG repeats. In addition to the apparent brain abnormalities, impairments also occur in peripheral tissues. We previously reported that mutant Huntingtin (mHTT exists in the liver and causes urea cycle deficiency. A low protein diet (17% restores urea cycle activity and ameliorates symptoms in HD model mice. It remains unknown whether the dietary protein content should be monitored closely in HD patients because the normal protein consumption is lower in humans (~15% of total calories than in mice (~22%. We assessed whether dietary protein content affects the urea cycle in HD patients. Thirty HD patients were hospitalized and received a standard protein diet (13.7% protein for 5 days, followed by a high protein diet (HPD, 26.3% protein for another 5 days. Urea cycle deficiency was monitored by the blood levels of citrulline and ammonia. HD progression was determined by the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS. The HPD increased blood citrulline concentration from 15.19 μmol/l to 16.30 μmol/l (p = 0.0378 in HD patients but did not change blood ammonia concentration. A 2-year pilot study of 14 HD patients found no significant correlation between blood citrulline concentration and HD progression. Our results indicated a short period of the HPD did not markedly compromise urea cycle function. Blood citrulline concentration is not a reliable biomarker of HD progression.

  14. High Protein Diet and Huntington's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Chiung-Mei; Lin, Yow-Sien; Wu, Yih-Ru; Chen, Pei; Tsai, Fuu-Jen; Yang, Chueh-Lien; Tsao, Ya-Tzu; Chang, Wen; Hsieh, I-Shan; Chern, Yijuang; Soong, Bing-Wen

    2015-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a neurodegenerative disorder caused by the huntingtin (HTT) gene with expanded CAG repeats. In addition to the apparent brain abnormalities, impairments also occur in peripheral tissues. We previously reported that mutant Huntingtin (mHTT) exists in the liver and causes urea cycle deficiency. A low protein diet (17%) restores urea cycle activity and ameliorates symptoms in HD model mice. It remains unknown whether the dietary protein content should be monitored closely in HD patients because the normal protein consumption is lower in humans (~15% of total calories) than in mice (~22%). We assessed whether dietary protein content affects the urea cycle in HD patients. Thirty HD patients were hospitalized and received a standard protein diet (13.7% protein) for 5 days, followed by a high protein diet (HPD, 26.3% protein) for another 5 days. Urea cycle deficiency was monitored by the blood levels of citrulline and ammonia. HD progression was determined by the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS). The HPD increased blood citrulline concentration from 15.19 μmol/l to 16.30 μmol/l (p = 0.0378) in HD patients but did not change blood ammonia concentration. A 2-year pilot study of 14 HD patients found no significant correlation between blood citrulline concentration and HD progression. Our results indicated a short period of the HPD did not markedly compromise urea cycle function. Blood citrulline concentration is not a reliable biomarker of HD progression.

  15. Unawareness of motor phenoconversion in Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCusker, Elizabeth A; Gunn, David G; Epping, Eric A; Loy, Clement T; Radford, Kylie; Griffith, Jane; Mills, James A; Long, Jeffrey D; Paulsen, Jane S

    2013-09-24

    To determine whether Huntington disease (HD) mutation carriers have motor symptoms (complaints) when definite motor onset (motor phenoconversion) is diagnosed and document differences between the groups with and without unawareness of motor signs. We analyzed data from 550 HD mutation carriers participating in the multicenter PREDICT-HD Study followed through the HD prodrome. Data analysis included demographics, the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS) and the Participant HD History of symptoms, self-report of progression, and cognitive, behavioral, and imaging measures. Unawareness was identified when no motor symptoms were self-reported but when definite motor HD was diagnosed. Of 38 (6.91%) with onset of motor HD, almost half (18/38 = 47.36%) had no motor symptoms despite signs of disease on the UHDRS motor rating and consistent with unawareness. A group with motor symptoms and signs was similar on a range of measures to the unaware group. Those with unawareness of HD signs reported less depression. Patients with symptoms had more striatal atrophy on imaging measures. Only half of the patients with newly diagnosed motor HD had motor symptoms. Unaware patients were less likely to be depressed. Self-report of symptoms may be inaccurate in HD at the earliest stage.

  16. Quantitative 7T phase imaging in premanifest Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Apple, A C; Possin, K L; Satris, G; Johnson, E; Lupo, J M; Jakary, A; Wong, K; Kelley, D A C; Kang, G A; Sha, S J; Kramer, J H; Geschwind, M D; Nelson, S J; Hess, C P

    2014-09-01

    In vivo MR imaging and postmortem neuropathologic studies have demonstrated elevated iron concentration and atrophy within the striatum of patients with Huntington disease, implicating neuronal loss and iron accumulation in the pathogenesis of this neurodegenerative disorder. We used 7T MR imaging to determine whether quantitative phase, a measurement that reflects both iron content and tissue microstructure, is altered in subjects with premanifest Huntington disease. Local field shift, calculated from 7T MR phase images, was quantified in 13 subjects with premanifest Huntington disease and 13 age- and sex-matched controls. All participants underwent 3T and 7T MR imaging, including volumetric T1 and 7T gradient recalled-echo sequences. Local field shift maps were created from 7T phase data and registered to caudate ROIs automatically parcellated from the 3T T1 images. Huntington disease-specific disease burden and neurocognitive and motor evaluations were also performed and compared with local field shift. Subjects with premanifest Huntington disease had smaller caudate volume and higher local field shift than controls. A significant correlation between these measurements was not detected, and prediction accuracy for disease state improved with inclusion of both variables. A positive correlation between local field shift and genetic disease burden was also found, and there was a trend toward significant correlations between local field shift and neurocognitive tests of working memory and executive function. Subjects with premanifest Huntington disease exhibit differences in 7T MR imaging phase within the caudate nuclei that correlate with genetic disease burden and trend with neurocognitive assessments. Ultra-high-field MR imaging of quantitative phase may be a useful approach for monitoring neurodegeneration in premanifest Huntington disease. © 2014 by American Journal of Neuroradiology.

  17. Placebo effect characteristics observed in a single, international, longitudinal study in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cubo, Esther; González, Miguel; del Puerto, Inés; de Yébenes, Justo Garcia; Arconada, Olga Fernández; Gabriel y Galán, José María Trejo

    2012-03-01

    Classically, clinical trials are based on the placebo-control design. Our aim was to analyze the placebo effect in Huntington's disease. Placebo data were obtained from an international, longitudinal, placebo-controlled trial for Huntington's disease (European Huntington's Disease Initiative Study Group). One-hundred and eighty patients were evaluated using the Unified Huntington Disease Rating Scale over 36 months. A placebo effect was defined as an improvement of at least 50% over baseline scores in the Unified Huntington Disease Rating Scale, and clinically relevant when at least 10% of the population met it. Only behavior showed a significant placebo effect, and the proportion of the patients with placebo effect ranged from 16% (first visit) to 41% (last visit). Nondepressed patients with better functional status were most likely to be placebo-responders over time. In Huntington's disease, behavior seems to be more vulnerable to placebo than overall motor function, cognition, and function Copyright © 2011 Movement Disorder Society.

  18. Identifying the “source” of recognition memory deficits in patients with Huntington's disease or Alzheimer's disease: Evidence from the CVLT-II

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fine, Eric M.; Delis, Dean C.; Wetter, Spencer R.; Jacobson, Mark W.; Hamilton, Joanne M.; Peavy, Guerry; Goldstein, Jody; McDonald, Carrie; Corey-Bloom, Jody; Bondi, Mark W.; Salmon, David P.

    2010-01-01

    The present study compared the performance of individuals with Huntington's disease (HD) and Alzheimer's disease (AD) on three types of California Verbal Learning Test–Second Edition (CVLT-II) recognition discriminability indices (RDI): Source, Novel, and Total. The HD and AD groups did not differ significantly on Source RDI (all 16 targets versus the 16 previously presented, List B, distractors). However, HD patients performed significantly better than AD patients on Total RDI (all 16 targets versus all 32 distractors) and Novel RDI (all 16 targets versus 16 new distractors). Implications of these findings on the differentiation of the memory disorders associated with HD and AD are discussed. PMID:18415887

  19. Movement sequencing in Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Georgiou-Karistianis, Nellie; Long, Jeffrey D; Lourens, Spencer G; Stout, Julie C; Mills, James A; Paulsen, Jane S

    2014-08-01

    To examine longitudinal changes in movement sequencing in prodromal Huntington's disease (HD) participants (795 prodromal HD; 225 controls) from the PREDICT-HD study. Prodromal HD participants were tested over seven annual visits and were stratified into three groups (low, medium, high) based on their CAG-Age Product (CAP) score, which indicates likely increasing proximity to diagnosis. A cued movement sequence task assessed the impact of advance cueing on response initiation and execution via three levels of advance information. Compared to controls, all CAP groups showed longer initiation and movement times across all conditions at baseline, demonstrating a disease gradient for the majority of outcomes. Across all conditions, the high CAP group had the highest mean for baseline testing, but also demonstrated an increase in movement time across the study. For initiation time, the high CAP group showed the highest mean baseline time across all conditions, but also faster decreasing rates of change over time. With progress to diagnosis, participants may increasingly use compensatory strategies, as evidenced by faster initiation. However, this occurred in conjunction with slowed execution times, suggesting a decline in effectively accessing control processes required to translate movement into effective execution.

  20. A novel mitochondrial tRNA(Ala) gene variant causes chronic progressive external ophthalmoplegia in a patient with Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Filosto, Massimiliano; Lanzi, Gaetana; Nesti, Claudia; Vielmi, Valentina; Marchina, Eleonora; Galvagni, Anna; Giliani, Silvia; Santorelli, Filippo M; Padovani, Alessandro

    2016-03-01

    Chronic progressive external ophthalmoplegia is a mitochondrial disorder usually caused by single or multiple mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) deletions and, more rarely, by maternally inherited mtDNA point mutations, most frequently in tRNA genes (MTT). We report on a patient presenting with a progressive eyelid ptosis with bilateral ophthalmoparesis, dysphagia, dysphonia and mild proximal limb weakness associate with a mild movement disorder characterized by abnormal involuntary movements involving head and limbs, imbalance and gait instability. Muscle biopsy demonstrated the presence of ragged red fibers and several cytochrome-C-oxidase negative fibers. Molecular analysis showed the novel m.5613T > C heteroplasmic mutation in the mitochondrial tRNA(Ala) gene (MTTA) which disrupts a conserved site and fulfills the accepted criteria of pathogenicity. Moreover, a 38 CAG trinucleotide repeat expansion was found on the huntingtin gene, thus configuring a singular CPEO/"reduced penetrance" Huntington disease "double trouble". With this novel MTTA point mutation, we extend the spectrum of provisional pathogenic changes in this gene, which is a very rare site of pathogenic mutation, and confirm that clinical expression of these mutations is hardly ever heterogeneous, including myopathy and CPEO. Mitochondrial involvement is an emerging key determinant in the pathogenesis of Huntington disease and it is well known that mutant huntingtin influences the mitochondrial respiratory complexes II and III. A synergist effect of the HTT and MTTA mutations on respiratory chain function may be hypothesized in our patient and should be regarded as a spur for further studies on the mtDNA/HTT reciprocal interactions.

  1. A novel mitochondrial tRNAAla gene variant causes chronic progressive external ophthalmoplegia in a patient with Huntington disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Filosto, Massimiliano; Lanzi, Gaetana; Nesti, Claudia; Vielmi, Valentina; Marchina, Eleonora; Galvagni, Anna; Giliani, Silvia; Santorelli, Filippo M.; Padovani, Alessandro

    2016-01-01

    Chronic progressive external ophthalmoplegia is a mitochondrial disorder usually caused by single or multiple mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) deletions and, more rarely, by maternally inherited mtDNA point mutations, most frequently in tRNA genes (MTT). We report on a patient presenting with a progressive eyelid ptosis with bilateral ophthalmoparesis, dysphagia, dysphonia and mild proximal limb weakness associate with a mild movement disorder characterized by abnormal involuntary movements involving head and limbs, imbalance and gait instability. Muscle biopsy demonstrated the presence of ragged red fibers and several cytochrome-C-oxidase negative fibers. Molecular analysis showed the novel m.5613T > C heteroplasmic mutation in the mitochondrial tRNAAla gene (MTTA) which disrupts a conserved site and fulfills the accepted criteria of pathogenicity. Moreover, a 38 CAG trinucleotide repeat expansion was found on the huntingtin gene, thus configuring a singular CPEO/“reduced penetrance” Huntington disease “double trouble”. With this novel MTTA point mutation, we extend the spectrum of provisional pathogenic changes in this gene, which is a very rare site of pathogenic mutation, and confirm that clinical expression of these mutations is hardly ever heterogeneous, including myopathy and CPEO. Mitochondrial involvement is an emerging key determinant in the pathogenesis of Huntington disease and it is well known that mutant huntingtin influences the mitochondrial respiratory complexes II and III. A synergist effect of the HTT and MTTA mutations on respiratory chain function may be hypothesized in our patient and should be regarded as a spur for further studies on the mtDNA/HTT reciprocal interactions. PMID:27014581

  2. Identification of elevated urea as a severe, ubiquitous metabolic defect in the brain of patients with Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patassini, Stefano; Begley, Paul; Reid, Suzanne J; Xu, Jingshu; Church, Stephanie J; Curtis, Maurice; Dragunow, Mike; Waldvogel, Henry J; Unwin, Richard D; Snell, Russell G; Faull, Richard L M; Cooper, Garth J S

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a neurodegenerative disorder wherein the aetiological defect is a mutation in the Huntington's gene (HTT), which alters the structure of the huntingtin protein through the lengthening of a polyglutamine tract and initiates a cascade that ultimately leads to dementia and premature death. However, neurodegeneration typically manifests in HD only in middle age, and processes linking the causative mutation to brain disease are poorly understood. Here, our objective was to elucidate further the processes that cause neurodegeneration in HD, by measuring levels of metabolites in brain regions known to undergo varying degrees of damage. We applied gas-chromatography/mass spectrometry-based metabolomics in a case-control study of eleven brain regions in short post-mortem-delay human tissue from nine well-characterized HD patients and nine controls. Unexpectedly, a single major abnormality was evident in all eleven brain regions studied across the forebrain, midbrain and hindbrain, namely marked elevation of urea, a metabolite formed in the urea cycle by arginase-mediated cleavage of arginine. Urea cycle activity localizes primarily in the liver, where it functions to incorporate protein-derived amine-nitrogen into urea for recycling or urinary excretion. It also occurs in other cell-types, but systemic over-production of urea is not known in HD. These findings are consistent with impaired local urea regulation in brain, by up-regulation of synthesis and/or defective clearance. We hypothesize that defective brain urea metabolism could play a substantive role in the pathogenesis of neurodegeneration, perhaps via defects in osmoregulation or nitrogen metabolism. Brain urea metabolism is therefore a target for generating novel monitoring/imaging strategies and/or therapeutic interventions aimed at ameliorating the impact of HD in patients. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. A plea for end-of-life discussions with patients suffering from Huntington's disease: the role of the physician.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Booij, Suzanne J; Engberts, Dick P; Rödig, Verena; Tibben, Aad; Roos, Raymund A C

    2013-10-01

    Euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide (PAS) by request and/or based on an advance directive are legal in The Netherlands under strict conditions, thus providing options for patients with Huntington's disease (HD) and other neurodegenerative diseases to stay in control and choose their end of life. HD is an inherited progressive disease characterised by chorea and hypokinesia, psychiatric symptoms and dementia. From a qualitative study based on interviews with 15 physicians experienced in treating HD, several ethical issues emerged. Consideration of these aspects leads to a discussion about the professional role of a physician in relation to the personal autonomy of a patient. Such a discussion can raise awareness that talking about end-of-life wishes with an HD patient is part of the legal, professional and moral responsibility of the physician, and that a letter of intent on behalf of the physician can improve active participation in the process. Discussion of these issues can help to advance the debate on euthanasia and PAS in HD and other neurodegenerative diseases.

  4. Rapid eye movement sleep disturbances in Huntington disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Arnulf, I.; Nielsen, J.; Lohmann, E.

    2008-01-01

    Background: Sleep disorders including insomnia, movements during sleep, and daytime sleepiness are common but poorly studied in Huntington disease (HD). Objective: To evaluate the HD sleep-wake phenotype (including abnormal motor activity during sleep) in patients with various HD stages and the l......Background: Sleep disorders including insomnia, movements during sleep, and daytime sleepiness are common but poorly studied in Huntington disease (HD). Objective: To evaluate the HD sleep-wake phenotype (including abnormal motor activity during sleep) in patients with various HD stages...

  5. Juvenile Huntington's Disease: Diagnostic and Treatment Considerations for the Psychiatrist.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quigley, Joanna

    2017-02-01

    Juvenile Huntington's disease (JHD) is a neurodegenerative disease with onset prior to the age of 21. While it accounts for a relatively small proportion of Huntington's disease (HD) diagnoses, its impact is significant on the quality of life for those affected. Clinicians may be unaware that HD can present in childhood and adolescence, delaying diagnosis. HD develops due to an expanded CAG repeat in the huntington gene. Rigidity, dystonia, and seizures are more common in JHD. Cognitive changes such as executive function impairments and decline in school performance are common. The burden of psychiatric symptoms is considerable and includes depression, anxiety, impulsivity, and aggression. While novel approaches to treatment interventions are investigated, current care is limited to targeting symptoms rather than disease modification. Prompt diagnosis and symptomatic treatment can maximize quality of life for these patients.

  6. Molecular diagnosis of Huntington disease in Brazilian patients Diagnóstico molecular da doença de Huntington em pacientes brasileiros

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    TEREZA C. LIMA E SILVA

    2000-03-01

    Full Text Available Huntington disease (HD is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder with autosomal dominant inheritance, characterized by choreiform movements and cognitive impairment. Onset of symptoms is around 40 years of age and progression to death occurs in approximately 10 to 15 years from the time of disease onset. HD is associated with an unstable CAG repeat expansion at the 5' and of the IT15 gene. We have genotyped the CAG repeat in the IT15 gene in 44 Brazilian individuals (42 patients and 2 unaffected family members belonging to 34 unrelated families thought to segregate HD. We found one expanded CAG allele in 32 individuals (76% belonging to 25 unrelated families. In these HD patients, expanded alleles varied from 43 to 73 CAG units and normal alleles varied from 18 to 26 CAGs. A significant negative correlation between age at onset of symptoms and size of the expanded CAG allele was found (r=0.6; p=0.0001; however, the size of the expanded CAG repeat could explain only about 40% of the variability in age at onset (r2=0.4. In addition, we genotyped 25 unrelated control individuals (total of 50 alleles and found normal CAG repeats varying from 16 to 33 units. The percentage of heterozigocity of the normal allele in the control population was 88%. In conclusion, our results showed that not all patients with the "HD" phenotype carried the expansion at the IT15 gene. Furthermore, molecular diagnosis was possible in all individuals, since no alleles of intermediate size were found. Therefore, molecular confirmation of the clinical diagnosis in HD should be sought in all suspected patients, making it possible for adequate genetic counseling.A doença de Huntington (HD é afecção neurodegenerativa com padrão de herança autossômica dominante caracterizada por movimentos involuntários coreiformes e alterações cognitivas. O início dos sintomas ocorre em torno dos 40 de idade, progredindo até a morte em um período de aproximadamente 10 a 15 anos ap

  7. Autonomic nervous system function in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrich, J; Schmitz, T; Saft, C; Postert, T; Kraus, P; Epplen, J T; Przuntek, H; Agelink, M W

    2002-06-01

    To investigate whether Huntington's disease (HD) affects autonomic nervous system (ANS) functioning. Twenty patients with HD who had positive genetic test results underwent standardised ANS function tests including sympathetic skin responses (SSRs) of the hands and feet, measurements of heart rate variability (HRV), both during five minutes of resting and deep respiration, and an orthostatic blood pressure test. Patients were classified according to the motor subscale of the unified Huntington's disease rating scale (UHDRS; mean (SD) score 26.4 (13.6)) and divided into two subgroups: UHDRS or =25 points (mid stages, M-HD). Autonomic indices were compared with those obtained for a group of well matched healthy controls (n=60). Overall, patients showed lower HRV indices than controls. Multivariate analysis with the independent factor of "group" (controls, E-HD, M-HD) showed a significant group effect on both the high frequency power (F=4.32, p=0.017) and the coefficient of variation (F=4.23, p=0.018), indicating a significant reduction in vagal modulation in the M-HD group. There was a shift in autonomic neurocardiac balance towards sympathetic predominance in the M-HD group compared with controls (F=2.89, p=0.062). Moreover, we found an inverse correlation between the severity of clinical HD symptoms (assessed by the UHDRS) and the modulation of cardiovagal activity (p=0.028). Vagal dysregulation was present in two patients; one of them also showed a pathological blood pressure test and a latency prolongation in the SSRs of the hands. Two other patients had pathologically reduced SSR amplitudes. Only patients of the M-HD group were affected. Autonomic dysfunction is present even in the middle stages of HD and affects both the sympathetic and parasympathetic branch of the ANS.

  8. Model-Based Magnetization Transfer Imaging Markers to Characterize Patients and Asymptomatic Gene Carriers in Huntington's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiest, Roland; Burgunder, Jean-Marc; Kiefer, Claus

    2017-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a chronic progressive neurodegenerative disorder with a long presymptomatic period that opens a window for potential therapies aimed at neuroprotection. Neuroimaging offers the potential to monitor disease-related progression of the disease burden (DB) using model-based magnetization transfer imaging. We have conducted a cross-sectional study to stratify healthy age-matched controls, premanifest and symptomatic HD patients (n = 30) according to their macromolecular depositions in the caudate nucleus. We employed a binary spin-bath magnetization transfer (MT) method for a quantitative description of macromolecule deposits and interactions with their adjacent environment. A region-of-interest based fuzzy clustering analysis identified representative clusters for several stages of the disease course related to its progression: one cluster represented subjects with a high DB 230 and healthy controls. Three further clusters represented transition zones between both DB levels (230-268) consisting of presymptomatic carriers with DB values increasing with decreasing distance from the cluster that indicated low DB and healthy age-matched controls. The proposed binary spin-bath MT method offers the potential to monitor DB and progression in HD. The method may augment qualitative MT techniques since it depicts tissue changes related to interactions between macromolecules and protons in disease specific brain regions that follow the neurodegenerative process.

  9. PSYCHIATRIC ASPECTS OF HUNTINGTON DISEASE – CASE REPORTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mirela Batta

    2004-04-01

    Full Text Available Background. Huntington disease occurrs rarely, it can be encountered not only by neurologists and psychiatrists but also by other medical practitioners. Its characteristic features are involuntary movements, cognitive disorders and gradual development of dementia. Diagnosis is given on the basis of these clinical features, positive familial anamnesis, with the laboratory exclusion of other neuropsychiatric diseases and with the help of neuroimaging methods (in particular NMR. The disease can be only confirmed by means of genetic analysis.Patients and methods. In this article, four cases of patients with Huntington disease and diverse psychiatric disorders that were hospitalised at the psychiatric department of the Maribor General Hospital between October 2002 and March 2003 are described. All the patients fulfilled the valid criteria for the diagnosis of Huntington disease. However, they differed according to their accompanying psychiatric psychopathology, age and social problems.Conclusions. The purpose of this article is to draw attention to different psychiatric symptoms and clinical manifestations of Huntington disease that are often misleading in the diagnostic process. In addition, exigency of early diagnostics, guidelines for referrals to genetic testing and psychiatric monitoring of these patients are emphasised.

  10. Clinical and genetic features of Huntington disease in Sri Lanka.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sumathipala, Dulika S; Jayasekara, Rohan W; Dissanayake, Vajira H W

    2013-12-05

    Huntington disease was one of the first neurological hereditary diseases for which genetic testing was made possible as early as 1993. The study describes the clinical and genetic characteristics of patients with Huntington disease in Sri Lanka. Data of 35 consecutive patients tested from 2007 to 2012 at the Human Genetics Unit, Faculty of Medicine, University of Colombo was analyzed retrospectively. Clinical data and genetic diagnostic results were reviewed. Statistical analysis was performed using descriptive statistics. Thirty patients had fully penetrant (FP) CAG repeat mutations and 5 had reduced penetrant (RP) CAG repeat mutations. In the FP group mean ages of onset and diagnosis were 37.5 and 40.4 years, while in the RP group it was 63.0 and 64.8 years respectively. The age of diagnosis ranged from 15 to 72 years, with 2 patients with Juvenile onset (60 years) Huntington disease. The symptoms at diagnosis were predominantly motor (32/35 -91%). Three patients had psychiatric and behavioral disorders. The age difference between onset and genetic diagnosis showed significant delay in females compared to males (p Huntington disease in the Sri Lankan study population were similar to that previously reported in literature.

  11. Wake and Sleep EEG in Patients With Huntington Disease: An eLORETA Study and Review of the Literature.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piano, Carla; Mazzucchi, Edoardo; Bentivoglio, Anna Rita; Losurdo, Anna; Calandra Buonaura, Giovanna; Imperatori, Claudio; Cortelli, Pietro; Della Marca, Giacomo

    2017-01-01

    The aim of the study was to evaluate the EEG modifications in patients with Huntington disease (HD) compared with controls, by means of the exact LOw REsolution Tomography (eLORETA) software. We evaluated EEG changes during wake, non-rapid eye movement (NREM) and rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. Moreover, we reviewed the literature concerning EEG modifications in HD. Twenty-three consecutive adult patients affected by HD were enrolled, 14 women and 9 men, mean age was 57.0 ± 12.4 years. Control subjects were healthy volunteers (mean age 58.2 ± 14.6 years). EEG and polygraphic recordings were performed during wake (before sleep) and during sleep. Sources of EEG activities were determined using the eLORETA software. In wake EEG, significant differences between patients and controls were detected in the delta frequency band (threshold T = ±4.606; P sleep, HD patients showed increased alpha power (T = ±4.516; P EEG data suggest a motor cortex dysfunction during wake and sleep in HD patients, which correlates with the clinical and polysomnographic evidence of increased motor activity during wake and NREM, and nearly absent motor abnormalities in REM. © EEG and Clinical Neuroscience Society (ECNS) 2016.

  12. Huntingtin Haplotypes Provide Prioritized Target Panels for Allele-specific Silencing in Huntington Disease Patients of European Ancestry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kay, Chris; Collins, Jennifer A; Skotte, Niels H; Southwell, Amber L; Warby, Simon C; Caron, Nicholas S; Doty, Crystal N; Nguyen, Betty; Griguoli, Annamaria; Ross, Colin J; Squitieri, Ferdinando; Hayden, Michael R

    2015-11-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is a dominant neurodegenerative disorder caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the Huntingtin gene (HTT). Heterozygous polymorphisms in cis with the mutation allow for allele-specific suppression of the pathogenic HTT transcript as a therapeutic strategy. To prioritize target selection, precise heterozygosity estimates are needed across diverse HD patient populations. Here we present the first comprehensive investigation of all common target alleles across the HTT gene, using 738 reference haplotypes from the 1000 Genomes Project and 2364 haplotypes from HD patients and relatives in Canada, Sweden, France, and Italy. The most common HD haplotypes (A1, A2, and A3a) define mutually exclusive sets of polymorphisms for allele-specific therapy in the greatest number of patients. Across all four populations, a maximum of 80% are treatable using these three target haplotypes. We identify a novel deletion found exclusively on the A1 haplotype, enabling potent and selective silencing of mutant HTT in approximately 40% of the patients. Antisense oligonucleotides complementary to the deletion reduce mutant A1 HTT mRNA by 78% in patient cells while sparing wild-type HTT expression. By suppressing specific haplotypes on which expanded CAG occurs, we demonstrate a rational approach to the development of allele-specific therapy for a monogenic disorder.

  13. Huntingtin Haplotypes Provide Prioritized Target Panels for Allele-specific Silencing in Huntington Disease Patients of European Ancestry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kay, Chris; Collins, Jennifer A; Skotte, Niels H; Southwell, Amber L; Warby, Simon C; Caron, Nicholas S; Doty, Crystal N; Nguyen, Betty; Griguoli, Annamaria; Ross, Colin J; Squitieri, Ferdinando; Hayden, Michael R

    2015-01-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is a dominant neurodegenerative disorder caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the Huntingtin gene (HTT). Heterozygous polymorphisms in cis with the mutation allow for allele-specific suppression of the pathogenic HTT transcript as a therapeutic strategy. To prioritize target selection, precise heterozygosity estimates are needed across diverse HD patient populations. Here we present the first comprehensive investigation of all common target alleles across the HTT gene, using 738 reference haplotypes from the 1000 Genomes Project and 2364 haplotypes from HD patients and relatives in Canada, Sweden, France, and Italy. The most common HD haplotypes (A1, A2, and A3a) define mutually exclusive sets of polymorphisms for allele-specific therapy in the greatest number of patients. Across all four populations, a maximum of 80% are treatable using these three target haplotypes. We identify a novel deletion found exclusively on the A1 haplotype, enabling potent and selective silencing of mutant HTT in approximately 40% of the patients. Antisense oligonucleotides complementary to the deletion reduce mutant A1 HTT mRNA by 78% in patient cells while sparing wild-type HTT expression. By suppressing specific haplotypes on which expanded CAG occurs, we demonstrate a rational approach to the development of allele-specific therapy for a monogenic disorder. PMID:26201449

  14. Pathogenic insights from Huntington's disease-like 2 and other Huntington's disease genocopies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Margolis, Russell L; Rudnicki, Dobrila D

    2016-12-01

    Huntington's disease-like 2 (HDL2) is a rare, progressive, autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disorder that genetically, clinically, and pathologically closely resembles Huntington's disease. We review HDL2 pathogenic mechanisms and examine the implications of these mechanisms for Huntington's disease and related diseases. HDL2 is caused by a CTG/CAG repeat expansion in junctophilin-3. Available data from cell and animal models and human brain suggest that HDL2 is a complex disease in which transcripts and proteins expressed bidirectionally from the junctophilin-3 locus contribute to pathogenesis through both gain-and loss-of-function mechanisms. Recent advances indicate that the pathogenesis of Huntington's disease is equally complex, despite the emphasis on toxic gain-of-function properties of the mutant huntingtin protein. Studies examining in parallel the genetic, clinical, neuropathological, and mechanistic similarities between Huntington's disease and HDL2 have begun to identify points of convergence between the pathogenic pathways of the two diseases. Comparisons to other diseases that are phenotypically or genetically related to Huntington's disease and HDL2 will likely reveal additional common pathways. The ultimate goal is to identify shared therapeutic targets and eventually develop therapies that may, at least in part, be effective across multiple similar rare diseases, an essential approach given the scarcity of resources for basic and translational research.

  15. Event-related potentials in patients with Huntington's disease and relatives at risk in relation to detailed psychometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hömberg, V; Hefter, H; Granseyer, G; Strauss, W; Lange, H; Hennerici, M

    1986-06-01

    Event-related potentials (ERPs) were studied in patients with Huntington's disease (HD) and their offspring at risk in a simple auditory oddball paradigm requiring the counting of the rarer of two stimulus categories. Group statistical analysis revealed prolongation of latencies of components P2, N2 and especially P3 in HD patients and to a lesser extent in at-risks. In a large population of normals the age-latency relationship for component P3 showed a non-linear shape with increasing slope and scatter in the older age groups. A bipartate linear regression analysis splitting the normal population at age 50 was used for detection of abnormalities of P3 latency in individual cases. Abnormal P3 latencies were present in the majority of HD patients and also in 25% of clinically normal at-risks. Correlation analysis of ERP components with detailed psychometry revealed a particularly high association of P3 latencies with measurements requiring speeded information processing in non-verbal tasks. P3 amplitude did not covary with performance scores but unlike P3 latency showed association with depression and psychosis scores. From the results it appears that analysis of ERPs is a useful electrophysiological tool for an objective assessment of cognition both in clinically definite and subclinical stages.

  16. The effects of physiotherapy with PNF concept on gait and balance of patients with Huntington's disease - pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mirek, Elżbieta; Filip, Magdalena; Banaszkiewicz, Krzysztof; Rudzińska, Monika; Szymura, Jadwiga; Pasiut, Szymon; Stożek, Joanna; Szczudlik, Andrzej

    2015-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a neurodegenerative, progressive disorder of the central nervous system which causes significant gait and balance disturbances. This is a pilot study which aims to determine the effects of a physiotherapy programme with use of Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation (PNF) on gait and balance in HD patients. 30 HD patients aged 21-60 with genetically confirmed diagnosis participated in the study. Participants followed a 3-week-long PNF-based physiotherapy programme. Gait and balance were evaluated twice in each participant: first at baseline and then after the course of physiotherapy. The following methods were used for gait disturbances: Tinetti Gait Assessment Tool, Up and Go Test, Timed Walking Tests for 10m and 20m (TWT10m, TWT20m). Balance was assessed with use of Berg Balance Scale, Pastor Test and Functional Reach Test. There was a significant improvement in all measures of balance and gait. PNF-based physiotherapy is effective and safe in HD patients. Copyright © 2015 Polish Neurological Society. Published by Elsevier Urban & Partner Sp. z o.o. All rights reserved.

  17. HD-PRO-TRIAD™ Validation: a Patient-Reported Instrument for the Symptom Triad of Huntington Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Noelle E. Carlozzi

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Background: Few valid, disease‐specific measures of health‐related quality of life (HRQOL capture the spectrum of symptoms associated with Huntington's disease (HD. The HD‐PRO‐TRIAD™ is a new, HD‐specific, patient‐reported outcome (PRO instrument of the HD symptom triad (cognitive decline, emotional/behavioral dyscontrol, and motor dysfunction designed for clinical research and practice. The objective was to validate the HD‐PRO‐TRIAD™ through a cross‐sectional sample of individuals with HD and caregivers.Methods: Development of the HD‐PRO‐TRIAD™ has been described elsewhere. A total of 132 individuals with HD and 40 HD caregivers, comprising 29 dyads, participated in the cross‐sectional psychometric validation of this instrument. Participants provided responses to the HD‐PRO‐TRIAD™ and other HRQOL and disease severity instruments (EuroQOL 5D, Short Form 12, Neuro‐QOL Item Banks, PROMIS Global Health, and self‐reported Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale Total Functional Capacity and Independence Scales. Internal consistency, construct validity, and patient–caregiver proxy consistency were evaluated. Results: Internal consistency of the three domains and overall HD‐PRO‐TRIAD™ instrument was supported by Cronbach's alpha values ≥0.94. Construct validity was supported by significant correlations between HD‐PRO‐TRIAD™ domain scores and other measures of the same domains (e.g., significant positive correlations between HD‐PRO‐TRIAD™ Anxiety with Neuro‐QOL Anxiety, as well as slightly weaker but still strong correlations with other HRQOL instruments (e.g., HD‐PRO‐TRIAD™ Anxiety and UHDRS Independence; all p<0.01. Consistency between patient self‐report and caregiver proxy report was supported by an intra‐class correlation coefficient ≥0.92 for all three domains and the overall instrument.Discussion: These data indicate that HD‐PRO‐TRIAD™ is a reliable and

  18. KEAP1-modifying small molecule reveals muted NRF2 signaling responses in neural stem cells from Huntington's disease patients

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quinti, Luisa; Dayalan Naidu, Sharadha; Träger, Ulrike; Chen, Xiqun; Kegel-Gleason, Kimberly; Llères, David; Connolly, Colúm; Chopra, Vanita; Low, Cho; Moniot, Sébastien; Sapp, Ellen; Tousley, Adelaide R.; Vodicka, Petr; Van Kanegan, Michael J.; Kaltenbach, Linda S.; Crawford, Lisa A.; Fuszard, Matthew; Higgins, Maureen; Miller, James R. C.; Farmer, Ruth E.; Potluri, Vijay; Samajdar, Susanta; Meisel, Lisa; Zhang, Ningzhe; Snyder, Andrew; Stein, Ross; Hersch, Steven M.; Ellerby, Lisa M.; Schwarzschild, Michael A.; Steegborn, Clemens; Leavitt, Blair R.; Degterev, Alexei; Tabrizi, Sarah J.; Lo, Donald C.; DiFiglia, Marian; Thompson, Leslie M.; Dinkova-Kostova, Albena T.; Kazantsev, Aleksey G.

    2017-01-01

    The activity of the transcription factor nuclear factor-erythroid 2 p45-derived factor 2 (NRF2) is orchestrated and amplified through enhanced transcription of antioxidant and antiinflammatory target genes. The present study has characterized a triazole-containing inducer of NRF2 and elucidated the mechanism by which this molecule activates NRF2 signaling. In a highly selective manner, the compound covalently modifies a critical stress-sensor cysteine (C151) of the E3 ligase substrate adaptor protein Kelch-like ECH-associated protein 1 (KEAP1), the primary negative regulator of NRF2. We further used this inducer to probe the functional consequences of selective activation of NRF2 signaling in Huntington's disease (HD) mouse and human model systems. Surprisingly, we discovered a muted NRF2 activation response in human HD neural stem cells, which was restored by genetic correction of the disease-causing mutation. In contrast, selective activation of NRF2 signaling potently repressed the release of the proinflammatory cytokine IL-6 in primary mouse HD and WT microglia and astrocytes. Moreover, in primary monocytes from HD patients and healthy subjects, NRF2 induction repressed expression of the proinflammatory cytokines IL-1, IL-6, IL-8, and TNFα. Together, our results demonstrate a multifaceted protective potential of NRF2 signaling in key cell types relevant to HD pathology. PMID:28533375

  19. Diagnostic Evaluation of Huntington's Disease Within the Frame of Bioinformatics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bobori, Catherine

    2017-01-01

    Huntington's disease is an autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disorder characterized by motor and cognitive impairment. At the early stages of the disease scientists have observed psychological changes and differences in patients' alpha, beta and theta powers. The early diagnosis of Huntington's disease is very important in order to administrate the correct medication to the patients and slow down the progress of the disease. This paper aims to suggest a protocol in which experiments could be based on, in an attempt to make an early diagnosis of the disease by taking into consideration the patients' electroencephalographic recordings during the early stages of the disease, as well as the methods of processing and classifying those EEG signals.

  20. Destination and source memory in Huntington's disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    El Haj, M.; Caillaud, M.; Verny, C.; Fasotti, L.; Allain, P.

    2016-01-01

    Destination memory refers to the recall of the destination of previously relayed information, and source memory refers to the recollection of the origin of received information. We compared both memory systems in Huntington's disease (HD) participants. For this, HD participants and healthy adults

  1. Nitric oxide dysregulation in platelets from patients with advanced Huntington disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Albino Carrizzo

    Full Text Available Nitric oxide (NO is a biologically active inorganic molecule involved in the regulation of many physiological processes, such as control of blood flow, platelet adhesion, endocrine function, neurotransmission and neuromodulation. In the present study, for the first time, we investigated the modulation of NO signaling in platelets of HD patients. We recruited 55 patients with manifest HD and 28 gender- and age-matched healthy controls. Our data demonstrated that NO-mediated vasorelaxation, when evoked by supernatant from insulin-stimulated HD platelets, gradually worsens along disease course. The defective vasorelaxation seems to stem from a faulty release of NO from platelets of HD patients and, it is associated with impairment of eNOS phosphorylation (Ser(1177 and activity. This study provides important insights about NO metabolism in HD and raises the hypothesis that the decrease of NO in platelets of HD individuals could be a good tool for monitoring advanced stages of the disease.

  2. The V471A polymorphism in autophagy-related gene ATG7 modifies age at onset specifically in Italian Huntington disease patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Metzger, Silke; Walter, Carolin; Riess, Olaf; Roos, Raymund A C; Nielsen, Jørgen E; Craufurd, David; Nguyen, Huu Phuc

    2013-01-01

    The cause of Huntington disease (HD) is a polyglutamine repeat expansion of more than 36 units in the huntingtin protein, which is inversely correlated with the age at onset of the disease. However, additional genetic factors are believed to modify the course and the age at onset of HD. Recently, we identified the V471A polymorphism in the autophagy-related gene ATG7, a key component of the autophagy pathway that plays an important role in HD pathogenesis, to be associated with the age at onset in a large group of European Huntington disease patients. To confirm this association in a second independent patient cohort, we analysed the ATG7 V471A polymorphism in additional 1,464 European HD patients of the "REGISTRY" cohort from the European Huntington Disease Network (EHDN). In the entire REGISTRY cohort we could not confirm a modifying effect of the ATG7 V471A polymorphism. However, analysing a modifying effect of ATG7 in these REGISTRY patients and in patients of our previous HD cohort according to their ethnic origin, we identified a significant effect of the ATG7 V471A polymorphism on the HD age at onset only in the Italian population (327 patients). In these Italian patients, the polymorphism is associated with a 6-years earlier disease onset and thus seems to have an aggravating effect. We could specify the role of ATG7 as a genetic modifier for HD particularly in the Italian population. This result affirms the modifying influence of the autophagic pathway on the course of HD, but also suggests population-specific modifying mechanisms in HD pathogenesis.

  3. Personalized gene silencing therapeutics for Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kay, C; Skotte, N H; Southwell, A L; Hayden, M R

    2014-07-01

    Gene silencing offers a novel therapeutic strategy for dominant genetic disorders. In specific diseases, selective silencing of only one copy of a gene may be advantageous over non-selective silencing of both copies. Huntington disease (HD) is an autosomal dominant disorder caused by an expanded CAG trinucleotide repeat in the Huntingtin gene (HTT). Silencing both expanded and normal copies of HTT may be therapeutically beneficial, but preservation of normal HTT expression is preferred. Allele-specific methods can selectively silence the mutant HTT transcript by targeting either the expanded CAG repeat or single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in linkage disequilibrium with the expansion. Both approaches require personalized treatment strategies based on patient genotypes. We compare the prospect of safe treatment of HD by CAG- and SNP-specific silencing approaches and review HD population genetics used to guide target identification in the patient population. Clinical implementation of allele-specific HTT silencing faces challenges common to personalized genetic medicine, requiring novel solutions from clinical scientists and regulatory authorities. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  4. Skeletal muscle pathology in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zielonka, Daniel; Piotrowska, Izabela; Marcinkowski, Jerzy T; Mielcarek, Michal

    2014-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a hereditary neurodegenerative disorder caused by the expansion of a polyglutamine stretch within the huntingtin protein (HTT). The neurological symptoms, that involve motor, cognitive and psychiatric disturbances, are caused by neurodegeneration that is particularly widespread in the basal ganglia and cereberal cortex. HTT is ubiquitously expressed and in recent years it has become apparent that HD patients experience a wide array of peripheral organ dysfunction including severe metabolic phenotype, weight loss, HD-related cardiomyopathy and skeletal muscle wasting. Although skeletal muscles pathology became a hallmark of HD, the mechanisms underlying muscular atrophy in this disorder are unknown. Skeletal muscles account for approximately 40% of body mass and are highly adaptive to physiological and pathological conditions that may result in muscle hypertrophy (due to increased mechanical load) or atrophy (inactivity, chronic disease states). The atrophy is caused by degeneration of myofibers and their replacement by fibrotic tissue is the major pathological feature in many genetic muscle disorders. Under normal physiological conditions the muscle function is orchestrated by a network of intrinsic hypertrophic and atrophic signals linked to the functional properties of the motor units that are likely to be imbalanced in HD. In this article, we highlight the emerging field of research with particular focus on the recent studies of the skeletal muscle pathology and the identification of new disease-modifying treatments.

  5. Relationship satisfaction and sexuality in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reininghaus, Eva; Lackner, Nina

    2015-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a chronic disabling disease that inflicts a considerable burden on patients and their families for a variety of reasons. These reasons include cognitive impairment and motor dysfunction, personality changes, and knowledge of possible genetic transmission of the disease to their children. Thus, the decision to take a genetic test for individuals at risk for HD is often associated with family planning and relationship stress. However, for most individuals, a positive genetic test does not alter family planning with regard to their decision to have children. HD has also been associated with abnormal sexual behaviors, although only a few studies have explored sexuality and sexual dysfunction in HD. Up to 85% of men and 75% of women experience sexual problems, including hypoactive sexual disorder in some cases and increased sexual interest and paraphilia in others. Psychologic support should involve the communication of realistic expectations about the progression of the disorder and potential consequences on the children. © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Large genetic animal models of Huntington's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morton, A Jennifer; Howland, David S

    2013-01-01

    The dominant nature of the Huntington's disease gene mutation has allowed genetic models to be developed in multiple species, with the mutation causing an abnormal neurological phenotype in all animals in which it is expressed. Many different rodent models have been generated. The most widely used of these, the transgenic R6/2 mouse, carries the mutation in a fragment of the human huntingtin gene and has a rapidly progressive and fatal neurological phenotype with many relevant pathological changes. Nevertheless, their rapid decline has been frequently questioned in the context of a disease that takes years to manifest in humans, and strenuous efforts have been made to make rodent models that are genetically more 'relevant' to the human condition, including full length huntingtin gene transgenic and knock-in mice. While there is no doubt that we have learned, and continue to learn much from rodent models, their usefulness is limited by two species constraints. First, the brains of rodents differ significantly from humans in both their small size and their neuroanatomical organization. Second, rodents have much shorter lifespans than humans. Here, we review new approaches taken to these challenges in the development of models of Huntington's disease in large brained, long-lived animals. We discuss the need for such models, and how they might be used to fill specific niches in preclinical Huntington's disease research, particularly in testing gene-based therapeutics. We discuss the advantages and disadvantages of animals in which the prodromal period of disease extends over a long time span. We suggest that there is considerable 'value added' for large animal models in preclinical Huntington's disease research.

  7. Semantic, phonologic, and verb fluency in Huntington's disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariana Jardim Azambuja

    Full Text Available Abstract Verbal fluency tasks have been identified as important indicators of executive functioning impairment in patients with frontal lobe dysfunction. Although the usual evaluation of this ability considers phonologic and semantic criteria, there is some evidence that fluency of verbs would be more sensitive in disclosing frontostriatal physiopathology since frontal regions primarily mediate retrieval of verbs. Huntington's disease usually affects these circuitries. Objective: To compare three types of verbal fluency task in the assessment of frontal-striatal dysfunction in HD subjects. Methods: We studied 26 Huntington's disease subjects, divided into two subgroups: mild (11 and moderate (15 along with 26 normal volunteers matched for age, gender and schooling, for three types of verbal fluency: phonologic fluency (F-A-S, semantic fluency and fluency of verbs. Results: Huntington's disease subjects showed a significant reduction in the number of words correctly generated in the three tasks when compared to the normal group. Both controls and Huntington's disease subjects showed a similar pattern of decreasing task performance with the greatest number of words being generated by semantic elicitation followed by verbs and lastly phonologic criteria. We did not find greater production of verbs compared with F-A-S and semantic conditions. Moreover, the fluency of verbs distinguished only the moderate group from controls. Conclusion: Our results indicated that phonologic and semantic fluency can be used to evaluate executive functioning, proving more sensitive than verb fluency. However, it is important to point out that the diverse presentations of Huntington's disease means that an extended sample is necessary for more consistent analysis of this issue.

  8. Identification of genetic variants associated with Huntington's disease progression

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hensman Moss, Davina J; Pardiñas, Antonio F; Langbehn, Douglas

    2017-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Huntington's disease is caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the huntingtin gene, HTT. Age at onset has been used as a quantitative phenotype in genetic analysis looking for Huntington's disease modifiers, but is hard to define and not always available. Therefore, we aimed to generate...... indivduals in the TRACK-HD cohort of Huntington's disease gene mutation carriers (data collected 2008-11). We generated a parallel progression score using data from 1773 previously genotyped participants from the European Huntington's Disease Network REGISTRY study of Huntington's disease mutation carriers...... at this SNP was associated with a 0·4 units per year (95% CI 0·16-0·66) reduction in the rate of change of the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS) Total Motor Score, and a reduction of 0·12 units per year (95% CI 0·06-0·18) in the rate of change of UHDRS Total Functional Capacity score...

  9. Huntington's Disease and Striatal Signaling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emmanuel eRoze

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Huntington’s Disease (HD is the most frequent neurodegenerative disease caused by an expansion of polyglutamines (CAG. The main clinical manifestations of HD are chorea, cognitive impairment and psychiatric disorders. The transmission of HD is autosomal dominant with a complete penetrance. HD has a single genetic cause, a well-defined neuropathology, and informative pre-manifest genetic testing of the disease is available. Striatal atrophy begins as early as 15 years before disease onset and continues throughout the period of manifest illness. Therefore, patients could theoretically benefit from therapy at early stages of the disease. One important characteristic of HD is the striatal vulnerability to neurodegeneration, despite similar expression of the protein in other brain areas. Aggregation of the mutated Huntingtin (HTT, impaired axonal transport, excitotoxicity, transcriptional dysregulation as well as mitochondrial dysfunction and energy deficits, are all part of the cellular events that underlie neuronal dysfunction and striatal death. Among these non-exclusive mechanisms, an alteration of striatal signaling is thought to orchestrate the downstream events involved in the cascade of striatal dysfunction.

  10. MR imaging and spectroscopy in juvenile Huntington disease

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schapiro, Mark; Doescher, Jason [Division of Neurology, Department of Pediatrics, Cincinnati Children' s Hospital Medical Center, 3333 Burnet Avenue, Cincinnati, OH 45229 (United States); Cecil, Kim M.; Kiefer, Alaina M. [Imaging Research Center, Departments of Radiology and Pediatrics, Cincinnati Children' s Hospital Medical Center, 3333 Burnet Avenue, Cincinnati, OH 45229 (United States); Jones, Blaise V. [Division of Neuroradiology, Department of Radiology and Pediatrics, Cincinnati Children' s Hospital Medical Center, 3333 Burnet Avenue, Cincinnati, OH 45229 (United States)

    2004-08-01

    Juvenile Huntington disease manifests differently from adult Huntington disease and has more variability in presentation. We describe a child with cognitive decline and adventitial movements in whom Huntington disease was confirmed with genetic testing. MR imaging showed abnormal T2 prolongation in the putamina and progressive caudate atrophy, and MR spectroscopy revealed elevated myoinositol and diminished N-acetyl aspartate, creatine, and phosphocreatine. Imaging findings of caudate atrophy and abnormal T2 prolongation in the putamina with MR spectroscopy findings consistent with dense gliosis can be helpful indicators of juvenile Huntington disease. (orig.)

  11. Cell-based technologies for Huntington's disease

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    Mônica Santoro Haddad

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Huntington's disease (HD is a fatal genetic disorder, which causes the progressive breakdown of neurons in the human brain. HD deteriorates human physical and mental abilities over time and has no cure. Stem cell-based technologies are promising novel treatments, and in HD, they aim to replace lost neurons and/or to prevent neural cell death. Herein we discuss the use of human fetal tissue (hFT, neural stem cells (NSCs of hFT origin or embryonic stem cells (ESCs and induced pluripotent stem cells (IPSCs, in clinical and pre-clinical studies. The in vivo use of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs, which are derived from non-neural tissues, will also be discussed. All these studies prove the potential of stem cells for transplantation therapy in HD, demonstrating cell grafting and the ability to differentiate into mature neurons, resulting in behavioral improvements. We claim that there are still many problems to overcome before these technologies become available for HD patient treatment, such as: a safety regarding the use of NSCs and pluripotent stem cells, which are potentially teratogenic; b safety regarding the transplantation procedure itself, which represents a risk and needs to be better studied; and finally c technical and ethical issues regarding cells of fetal and embryonic origin.

  12. Tetrabenazine is neuroprotective in Huntington's disease mice

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    Tang Tie-Shan

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Huntington's disease (HD is a neurodegenerative disorder caused by a polyglutamine (polyQ expansion in Huntingtin protein (Htt. PolyQ expansion in Httexp causes selective degeneration of striatal medium spiny neurons (MSN in HD patients. A number of previous studies suggested that dopamine signaling plays an important role in HD pathogenesis. A specific inhibitor of vesicular monoamine transporter (VMAT2 tetrabenazine (TBZ has been recently approved by Food and Drug Administration for treatment of HD patients in the USA. TBZ acts by reducing dopaminergic input to the striatum. Results In previous studies we demonstrated that long-term feeding with TBZ (combined with L-Dopa alleviated the motor deficits and reduced the striatal neuronal loss in the yeast artificial chromosome transgenic mouse model of HD (YAC128 mice. To further investigate a potential beneficial effects of TBZ for HD treatment, we here repeated TBZ evaluation in YAC128 mice starting TBZ treatment at 2 months of age ("early" TBZ group and at 6 months of age ("late" TBZ group. In agreement with our previous studies, we found that both "early" and "late" TBZ treatments alleviated motor deficits and reduced striatal cell loss in YAC128 mice. In addition, we have been able to recapitulate and quantify depression-like symptoms in TBZ-treated mice, reminiscent of common side effects observed in HD patients taking TBZ. Conclusions Our results further support therapeutic value of TBZ for treatment of HD but also highlight the need to develop more specific dopamine antagonists which are less prone to side-effects.

  13. Functional compensation of motor function in pre-symptomatic Huntington's disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Klöppel, Stefan; Draganski, Bogdan; Siebner, Hartwig R

    2009-01-01

    Involuntary choreiform movements are a clinical hallmark of Huntington's disease. Studies in clinically affected patients suggest a shift of motor activations to parietal cortices in response to progressive neurodegeneration. Here, we studied pre-symptomatic gene carriers to examine the compensat......Involuntary choreiform movements are a clinical hallmark of Huntington's disease. Studies in clinically affected patients suggest a shift of motor activations to parietal cortices in response to progressive neurodegeneration. Here, we studied pre-symptomatic gene carriers to examine...

  14. Huntington's Disease: Two-Year Observational Follow-Up of Executive Function Evaluation with CNS Vital Signs Test in an Adult Patient

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Anna Lucia Spear; Valença, Alexandre Martins; e Silva, Adriana Cardoso de Oliveira; Cerqueira, Ana Claudia; Ferraz, Lígia Maria Chaves; Nardi, Antonio Egidio

    2011-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a genetic, degenerative, and progressive central nervous system disease. It is characterized by motor abnormalities and cognitive and psychiatric symptoms. Objective. To describe the precise degree of clinical severity of patients with HD through a new neurocognitive assessment. Methods. Unprecedented battery of computerized tests, CNSVS (Central Nervous System Vital Signs), was applied at three different moments in 2008, 2009, and 2010. The accurate and reliable CNSVS objectively provided the cognitive state of patients and allowed for the evaluation of disease progression. Case Report. P., 26, female, without any medication, with normal psychomotor development is a parent carrier of HD. In 2008, she was diagnosed with HD in accordance with the Medical Genetics Laboratories. Conclusion. The tests may be useful to reveal the exact measure of the current evolutionary stage of HD patients, allowing for more efficient planning of treatment and future procedures, such as the medication, therapy, and physical activity to be administered. PMID:22203851

  15. What is HD - Huntington's Disease?

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Connect with us! What is HD? What Is Huntington’s Disease? Stages of hd The Scope of hd ... END TO HD? WHERE TO FIND HELP PUBLICATIONS Huntington’s disease (HD) is a fatal genetic disorder that ...

  16. Stages of Huntington's Disease (HD)

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Connect with us! What is HD? What Is Huntington’s Disease? Stages of hd The Scope of hd ... END TO HD? WHERE TO FIND HELP PUBLICATIONS Huntington’s disease (HD) is a fatal genetic disorder that ...

  17. Comprehension of Complex Discourse in Different Stages of Huntington's Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saldert, Charlotta; Fors, Angelika; Stroberg, Sofia; Hartelius, Lena

    2010-01-01

    Background: Huntington's disease not only affects motor speech control, but also may have an impact on the ability to produce and understand language in communication. Aims: The ability to comprehend basic and complex discourse was investigated in three different stages of Huntington's disease. Methods & Procedures: In this experimental group…

  18. Reaction time and rhythm of movement in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez Pueyo, A; García-Ruiz, P J; Feliz, C E; Garcia Caldentey, J; Del Val, J; Herranz, A

    2016-03-15

    Huntington disease (HD) is characterized by several hyperkinesias though motor slowness is also another cardinal in this disease. In addition, self-paced timing movements are also disturbed in HD, which may also affect several rhythmic voluntary movements such as gait. Motor slowness can be measured with clinical scales such as the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS) and timed tests, but also with the reaction time (RT) paradigm. We evaluated RT as a measure of motor slowness in 30 patients with genetically confirmed Huntington's disease and 24 control subjects. We also evaluated self-paced timing precision (SPTP) by applying a simple software program devised by our group. Clinical assessment was performed according to the UHDRS, including motor section, total functional capacity (TFC) and cognitive section (verbal fluency test, symbol digit, and Stroop test) The mean values obtained for RT and SPTP were statistically different in HD as compared with those from controls (p<0.0005). We observed a statistically significant correlation between RT and TFC scores (rs=-0.57, p<0.005 Spearman's correlation) and also between SPTP values and TFC scores (rs=-0.40, p<0.05 Spearman's correlation). In addition, RT and SPTP significantly correlated with cognitive scores (including digit symbol, verbal fluency and Stroop tests). Simple tests such as RT and SPTP provide an objective evaluation of motor impairment in HD yielding measures that correlate with clinical assessment and functional disability. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Huntington disease: DNA analysis in brazilian population

    OpenAIRE

    RASKIN, SALMO; ALLAN, NASSER; TEIVE, HÉLIO A.G.; CARDOSO, FRANCISCO; HADDAD, MÔNICA SANTORO; LEVI, GILBERTO; BOY, RAQUEL; LERENA JR, JUAN; SOTOMAIOR, VANESSA SANTOS; JANZEN-DÜCK, MÔNICA; JARDIM, LAURA BANNACH; FELLANDER, FLÁVIO R.; ANDRADE, LUIZ AUGUSTO FRANCO

    2000-01-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is associated with expansions of a CAG trinucleotide repeat in the HD gene. Accurate measurement of a specific CAG repeat sequence in the HD gene in 92 Brazilian controls without HD, 44 Brazilian subjects with clinical findings suggestive of HD and 40 individuals from 6 putative HD families, showed a range from 7 to 33 repeats in normal subjects and 39 to 88 repeats in affected subjects. A trend between early age at onset of first symptoms and increasing number of repe...

  20. Communication and Huntington's Disease: Qualitative Interviews and Focus Groups with Persons with Huntington's Disease, Family Members, and Carers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hartelius, Lena; Jonsson, Maria; Rickeberg, Anneli; Laakso, Katja

    2010-01-01

    Background: As an effect of the cognitive, emotional and motor symptoms associated with Huntington's disease, communicative interaction is often dramatically changed. No study has previously included the subjective reports on this subject from individuals with Huntington's disease. Aims: To explore the qualitative aspects of how communication is…

  1. Huntington's Disease: Hope through Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... damages only certain parts of the brain. One theory is that cells in these parts of the ... Information Page Landau-Kleffner Syndrome Information Page Learning Disabilities Information Page Leigh's Disease Information Page Lennox-Gastaut ...

  2. Huntington's Disease Society of America

    Science.gov (United States)

    About HDSA Mission & Vision History of Huntington’s Disease HDSA History Chapters & Affiliates HDSA Centers of Excellence Staff Directory Annual Convention Board of Trustees National Youth Alliance Advocacy Support Groups ...

  3. 1H magnetic resonance spectroscopy in preclinical Huntington disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Oostrom, Joost C. H.; Sijens, Paul E.; Roos, Raymund A. C.; Leenders, Klaus L.

    2007-01-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is a hereditary brain disease, causing progressive deterioration after a preclinical phase. The pathophysiology of early brain abnormalities around disease onset is largely unknown. Some preclinical mutation carriers (PMC) show structural or metabolic changes on brain imaging

  4. The Addenbrooke's Cognitive Examination-Revised accurately detects cognitive decline in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Begeti, Faye; Tan, Adrian Y K; Cummins, Gemma A; Collins, Lucy M; Guzman, Natalie Valle; Mason, Sarah L; Barker, Roger A

    2013-11-01

    Cognitive features, which begin before manifestation of the motor features, are an integral part of Huntington's disease and profoundly affect quality of life. A number of neuropsychological batteries have been used to assess this aspect of the condition, many of which are difficult to administer and time consuming, especially in advanced disease. We, therefore, investigated a simple and practical way to monitor cognition using the Addenbrooke's Cognitive Examination-Revised (ACE-R) in 126 manifest Huntington's disease patients, 28 premanifest gene carriers and 21 controls. Using this test, we demonstrated a selective decrease in phonemic, but not semantic, fluency in premanifest participants Cognitive decline in manifest Huntington's disease varied according to disease severity with extensive cognitive decline observed in early-stage Huntington's disease patients, indicating that this would be an optimal stage for interventions designed to halt cognitive decline, and lesser changes in the advanced cases. We next examined cognitive performance in patients prescribed antidopaminergic drugs as these drugs are known to decrease cognition when administered to healthy volunteers. We paradoxically found that these drugs may be beneficial, as early-stage Huntington's disease participants in receipt of them had improved attention and Mini-Mental State Examination scores. In conclusion, this is the first study to test the usefulness of the ACE-R in a Huntington's disease population and demonstrates that this is a brief, inexpensive and practical way to measure global cognitive performance in clinical practice with potential use in clinical trials.

  5. Abnormalities in the tricarboxylic Acid cycle in Huntington disease and in a Huntington disease mouse model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naseri, Nima N; Xu, Hui; Bonica, Joseph; Vonsattel, Jean Paul G; Cortes, Etty P; Park, Larry C; Arjomand, Jamshid; Gibson, Gary E

    2015-06-01

    Glucose metabolism is reduced in the brains of patients with Huntington disease (HD). The mechanisms underlying this deficit, its link to the pathology of the disease, and the vulnerability of the striatum in HD remain unknown. Abnormalities in some of the key mitochondrial enzymes involved in glucose metabolism, including the pyruvate dehydrogenase complex (PDHC) and the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle, may contribute to these deficits. Here, activities for these enzymes and select protein levels were measured in human postmortem cortex and in striatum and cortex of an HD mouse model (Q175); mRNA levels encoding for these enzymes were also measured in the Q175 mouse cortex. The activities of PDHC and nearly all of the TCA cycle enzymes were dramatically lower (-50% to 90%) in humans than in mice. The activity of succinate dehydrogenase increased with HD in human (35%) and mouse (23%) cortex. No other changes were detected in the human HD cortex or mouse striatum. In Q175 cortex, there were increased activities of PDHC (+12%) and aconitase (+32%). Increased mRNA levels for succinyl thiokinase (+88%) and isocitrate dehydrogenase (+64%) suggested an upregulation of the TCA cycle. These patterns of change differ from those reported in other diseases, which may offer unique metabolic therapeutic opportunities for HD patients.

  6. The role of tau in the pathological process and clinical expression of Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vuono, Romina; Winder-Rhodes, Sophie; de Silva, Rohan; Cisbani, Giulia; Drouin-Ouellet, Janelle; Spillantini, Maria G; Cicchetti, Francesca; Barker, Roger A

    2015-07-01

    Huntington's disease is a neurodegenerative disorder caused by an abnormal CAG repeat expansion within exon 1 of the huntingtin gene HTT. While several genetic modifiers, distinct from the Huntington's disease locus itself, have been identified as being linked to the clinical expression and progression of Huntington's disease, the exact molecular mechanisms driving its pathogenic cascade and clinical features, especially the dementia, are not fully understood. Recently the microtubule associated protein tau, MAPT, which is associated with several neurodegenerative disorders, has been implicated in Huntington's disease. We explored this association in more detail at the neuropathological, genetic and clinical level. We first investigated tau pathology by looking for the presence of hyperphosphorylated tau aggregates, co-localization of tau with mutant HTT and its oligomeric intermediates in post-mortem brain samples from patients with Huntington's disease (n = 16) compared to cases with a known tauopathy and healthy controls. Next, we undertook a genotype-phenotype analysis of a large cohort of patients with Huntington's disease (n = 960) with a particular focus on cognitive decline. We report not only on the tau pathology in the Huntington's disease brain but also the association between genetic variation in tau gene and the clinical expression and progression of the disease. We found extensive pathological inclusions containing abnormally phosphorylated tau protein that co-localized in some instances with mutant HTT. We confirmed this related to the disease process rather than age, by showing it is also present in two patients with young-onset Huntington's disease (26 and 40 years old at death). In addition we demonstrate that tau oligomers (suggested to be the most likely neurotoxic tau entity) are present in the Huntington's disease brains. Finally we highlight the clinical significance of this pathology by demonstrating that the MAPT haplotypes affect the rate

  7. The Counselor and Genetic Disease: Huntington's Disease as a Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wexler, Nancy S.

    This speech offers a brief description of Huntington's Disease (HD): its causes, symptoms, and incidence. It then concentrates on the psychological problems of persons one of whose parents had the disease, and the role of the counselor in helping these humans cope with their fears about contacting it themselves. A relatively detailed case study is…

  8. Reduced gluconeogenesis and lactate clearance in Huntington's disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Josefsen, Knud; Nielsen, Signe M B; Campos, André

    2010-01-01

    We studied systemic and brain glucose and lactate metabolism in Huntington's disease (HD) patients in response to ergometer cycling. Following termination of exercise, blood glucose increased abruptly in control subjects, but no peak was seen in any of the HD patients (2.0 ± 0.5 vs. 0.0 ± 0.2mM, ...... for gluconeogenesis in HD, possibly contributing to the clinical symptoms of HD. We propose that blood glucose concentration in the recovery from exercise can be applied as a liver function test in HD patients....

  9. Cystathionine γ-lyase deficiency mediates neurodegeneration in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paul, Bindu D; Sbodio, Juan I; Xu, Risheng; Vandiver, M Scott; Cha, Jiyoung Y; Snowman, Adele M; Snyder, Solomon H

    2014-05-01

    Huntington's disease is an autosomal dominant disease associated with a mutation in the gene encoding huntingtin (Htt) leading to expanded polyglutamine repeats of mutant Htt (mHtt) that elicit oxidative stress, neurotoxicity, and motor and behavioural changes. Huntington's disease is characterized by highly selective and profound damage to the corpus striatum, which regulates motor function. Striatal selectivity of Huntington's disease may reflect the striatally selective small G protein Rhes binding to mHtt and enhancing its neurotoxicity. Specific molecular mechanisms by which mHtt elicits neurodegeneration have been hard to determine. Here we show a major depletion of cystathionine γ-lyase (CSE), the biosynthetic enzyme for cysteine, in Huntington's disease tissues, which may mediate Huntington's disease pathophysiology. The defect occurs at the transcriptional level and seems to reflect influences of mHtt on specificity protein 1, a transcriptional activator for CSE. Consistent with the notion of loss of CSE as a pathogenic mechanism, supplementation with cysteine reverses abnormalities in cultures of Huntington's disease tissues and in intact mouse models of Huntington's disease, suggesting therapeutic potential.

  10. The views of adults with Huntington's disease on assisted dying: A qualitative exploration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Regan, Laurence; Preston, Nancy J; Eccles, Fiona J R; Simpson, Jane

    2017-11-01

    Assisted dying is frequently debated publicly and research often includes the views of health professionals on this issue. However, the views of people with life-limiting conditions, for whom this issue is likely to have a different resonance, are less well represented. The purpose of this study was to explore the views of people who live with the inevitability of developing Huntington's disease, a genetically transmitted disease which significantly limits life, on assisted dying. Using thematic analysis methodology, individual semi-structured interviews were conducted. Seven participants (five women and two men) who were gene positive for Huntington's disease took part in the study. Four themes were extracted: (1) autonomy and kindness in assisted dying: the importance of moral principles; (2) Huntington's disease threatens life and emphasises issues relating to death; (3) dilemmas in decision-making on assisted dying: "There are no winners" and (4) the absence of explicit discussion on dying and Huntington's disease: "Elephants in the room". Our findings suggest that talking to patients about assisted death may not cause harm and may even be invited by many patients with Huntington's disease. The perspectives of those who live with Huntington's disease, especially given its extended effects within families, add significant clinical and theoretical insights.

  11. Mutant huntingtin activates Nrf2-responsive genes and impairs dopamine synthesis in a PC12 model of Huntington's disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Roon-Mom, W.M.C.; Pepers, B.A.; 't Hoen, P.A.C.; Verwijmeren, C.A.C.M.; den Dunnen, J.T.; Dorsman, J.C.; van Ommen, G.B.

    2008-01-01

    Background: Huntington's disease is a progressive autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disorder that is caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the HD or Huntington's disease gene. Although micro array studies on patient and animal tissue provide valuable information, the primary effect of mutant

  12. Neuronal Ca(2+) dyshomeostasis in Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giacomello, Marta; Oliveros, Juan C; Naranjo, Jose R; Carafoli, Ernesto

    2013-01-01

    The expansion of the N-terminal poly-glutamine tract of the huntingtin (Htt) protein is responsible for Huntington disease (HD). A large number of studies have explored the neuronal phenotype of HD, but the molecular aethiology of the disease is still very poorly understood. This has hampered the development of an appropriate therapeutical strategy to at least alleviate its symptoms. In this short review, we have focused our attention on the alteration of a specific cellular mechanism common to all HD models, either genetic or induced by treatment with 3-NPA, i.e. the cellular dyshomeostasis of Ca(2+). We have highlighted the direct and indirect (i.e. transcriptionally mediated) effects of mutated Htt on the maintenance of the intracellular Ca(2+) balance, the correct modulation of which is fundamental to cell survival and the disturbance of which plays a key role in the death of the cell.

  13. Allele-specific suppression of mutant huntingtin using antisense oligonucleotides: providing a therapeutic option for all Huntington disease patients.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Niels H Skotte

    Full Text Available Huntington disease (HD is an inherited, fatal neurodegenerative disorder caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the huntingtin gene. The mutant protein causes neuronal dysfunction and degeneration resulting in motor dysfunction, cognitive decline, and psychiatric disturbances. Currently, there is no disease altering treatment, and symptomatic therapy has limited benefit. The pathogenesis of HD is complicated and multiple pathways are compromised. Addressing the problem at its genetic root by suppressing mutant huntingtin expression is a promising therapeutic strategy for HD. We have developed and evaluated antisense oligonucleotides (ASOs targeting single nucleotide polymorphisms that are significantly enriched on HD alleles (HD-SNPs. We describe our structure-activity relationship studies for ASO design and find that adjusting the SNP position within the gap, chemical modifications of the wings, and shortening the unmodified gap are critical for potent, specific, and well tolerated silencing of mutant huntingtin. Finally, we show that using two distinct ASO drugs targeting the two allelic variants of an HD-SNP could provide a therapeutic option for all persons with HD; allele-specifically for roughly half, and non-specifically for the remainder.

  14. Allele-specific suppression of mutant huntingtin using antisense oligonucleotides: providing a therapeutic option for all Huntington disease patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skotte, Niels H; Southwell, Amber L; Østergaard, Michael E; Carroll, Jeffrey B; Warby, Simon C; Doty, Crystal N; Petoukhov, Eugenia; Vaid, Kuljeet; Kordasiewicz, Holly; Watt, Andrew T; Freier, Susan M; Hung, Gene; Seth, Punit P; Bennett, C Frank; Swayze, Eric E; Hayden, Michael R

    2014-01-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is an inherited, fatal neurodegenerative disorder caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the huntingtin gene. The mutant protein causes neuronal dysfunction and degeneration resulting in motor dysfunction, cognitive decline, and psychiatric disturbances. Currently, there is no disease altering treatment, and symptomatic therapy has limited benefit. The pathogenesis of HD is complicated and multiple pathways are compromised. Addressing the problem at its genetic root by suppressing mutant huntingtin expression is a promising therapeutic strategy for HD. We have developed and evaluated antisense oligonucleotides (ASOs) targeting single nucleotide polymorphisms that are significantly enriched on HD alleles (HD-SNPs). We describe our structure-activity relationship studies for ASO design and find that adjusting the SNP position within the gap, chemical modifications of the wings, and shortening the unmodified gap are critical for potent, specific, and well tolerated silencing of mutant huntingtin. Finally, we show that using two distinct ASO drugs targeting the two allelic variants of an HD-SNP could provide a therapeutic option for all persons with HD; allele-specifically for roughly half, and non-specifically for the remainder.

  15. Ubiquitin: a potential cerebrospinal fluid progression marker in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vinther-Jensen, T; Simonsen, A H; Budtz-Jørgensen, E; Hjermind, L E; Nielsen, J E

    2015-10-01

    Finding early and dynamic biomarkers in Huntington's disease is a key to understanding the early pathology of Huntington's disease and potentially to tracking disease progression. This would benefit the future evaluation of potential neuroprotective and disease-modifying therapies, as well as aid in identifying an optimal time point for initiating a potential therapeutic intervention. This explorative proteomics study evaluated cerebrospinal fluid from 94 Huntington's disease gene-expansion carriers (39 premanifest and 55 manifest) and 27 Huntington's disease gene-expansion negative individuals using surface-enhanced laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight (SELDI-TOF) mass spectrometry. Differences in peak intensity from SELDI-TOF spectra were evaluated. Levels of 10 peaks were statistically significantly different between manifest gene-expansion carriers and controls. One of them identified as ubiquitin was shown to be dependent on the Unified Huntington Disease Rating Scale Total Functional Capacity, a pseudo-measure of disease severity (P = 0.001), and the Symbol Digit Modalities Test (0.04) in manifest and CAG-age product score (P = 0.019) in all gene-expansion carriers. Multiple studies have shown that the ubiquitin-proteasome system is involved in Huntington's disease pathogenesis and understanding of this involvement may have therapeutic potential in humans. This is the first study on cerebrospinal fluid to confirm the involvement of the ubiquitin-proteasome system in Huntington's disease. Furthermore it is shown that ubiquitin increases with disease progression and CAG-age product score and therefore may have the potential as a Huntington's disease progression marker, also prior to motor onset. © 2015 EAN.

  16. Care of patients with Huntington's disease in South America: a survey Cuidado de pacientes com doença de Huntington na América do Sul: um inquérito

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ricardo Oliveira Horta Maciel

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Huntington's disease (HD is a rare neurodegenerative disease with a multitude of symptoms, which requires access to specialized multidisciplinary care for adequate management. The aim of this study was to survey the characteristics of care in various HD centers in South America (SA. Methods A questionnaire was sent to 24 centers involved in the care for HD patients in SA. Results Of the total 24 centers, 19 (79.2% are academic units. The majority of centers (62.5% are general movement disorders clinics. Multidisciplinary care is available in 19 (79.2% centers and in 20 (83.3% care is provided free of charge. Genetic testing and counseling are available in 25 and 66.6% of centers, respectively. The majority of centers (83.3% have no institutional support for end-stage care. Conclusions Although HD centers in SA are committed to providing multidisciplinary care, access to genetic counseling and end-stage care are lacking in most centers. A doença de Huntington (DH é uma doença neurodegenerativa rara que requer tratamento multidisciplinar especializado para manejo adequado. O objetivo do presente trabalho foi pesquisar as características da assistência à saúde em centros de DH na América do Sul (AS. Métodos Um questionário foi enviado para 24 centros envolvidos no cuidado de pacientes com DH na AS. Resultados Dos 24 centros, 19 (79,2% são unidades acadêmicas. A maioria (62,5% são clínicas de distúrbios dos movimentos. Cuidado multidisciplinar é disponível em 19 (79,2% dos centros e em 20 (83,3%, o tratamento é gratuito. O teste e o aconselhamento genético estão disponíveis em 25 e 66,6% dos centros, respectivamente. Não há suporte institucional para cuidado terminal em 83,3% dos centros. Conclusões Apesar dos centros de DH na AS terem compromisso com o provimento de cuidados multidisciplinares, o acesso a aconselhamento genético e a tratamento na fase terminal são falhos na maioria dos centros.

  17. Treadmill exercise improves short-term memory by enhancing hippocampal cell proliferation in quinolinic acid-induced Huntington?s disease rats

    OpenAIRE

    Kim, You-Mi; Ji, Eun-Sang; Kim, Sang-Hoon; Kim, Tae-Woon; Ko, Il-Gyu; Jin, Jun-Jang; Kim, Chang-Ju; Kim, Tae-Wook; Kim, Dong-Hee

    2015-01-01

    Huntington?s disease (HD) is an inherited genetic disorder, characterized by cognitive dysfunction and abnormal body movements called chorea. Quinolinic acid (QA) is an endogenous metabolite of tryptophan in the kynurenine pathway. QA-induced alterations are similar to the symptoms of HD patients. Physical exercise has beneficial effects on the brain functions. Exercise increases production of neurotrophic factors in the brain and improves learning ability and memory function. In the present ...

  18. The V471A polymorphism in autophagy-related gene ATG7 modifies age at onset specifically in Italian Huntington disease patients

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Metzger, Silke; Walter, Carolin; Riess, Olaf; Roos, Raymund A C; Nielsen, Jørgen E; Craufurd, David; Nguyen, Huu Phuc; Kremer, Berry

    2013-01-01

    The cause of Huntington disease (HD) is a polyglutamine repeat expansion of more than 36 units in the huntingtin protein, which is inversely correlated with the age at onset of the disease. However, additional genetic factors are believed to modify the course and the age at onset of HD. Recently, we

  19. Neurolinguistic features of spontaneous language production dissociate three forms of neurodegenerative disease: Alzheimer's, Huntington's, and Parkinson's.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Illes, J

    1989-11-01

    An analysis of the temporal (prospective) form (silent and filled hesitations, repetitions, incomplete phrases, context-related comments, interjections), syntactic form, and lexical (retrospective) form (verbal deviations, open and closed class phrases) of spontaneous language production of early and middle stage Alzheimer's, Huntington's, and Parkinson's patients was made. Results showed that the language structure was disrupted in each disease, but in different ways. Temporal interruptions of varying types were frequent in the language of Alzheimer's and Huntington's Disease patients; only long-duration silent hesitations were frequent in Parkinson's language samples. Syntactic complexity was reduced in Huntington's Disease. Verbal paraphasias were found in both the language of Alzheimer's patients, as well as moderately advanced Huntington's patients. Closed class phrases were predominant in the language of Alzheimer's patients and Huntington's patients, and open class phrases in the language of Parkinson's patients. Taken together, the results suggest that (1) there is a unique neurolinguistic profile for spontaneous language production for each neurodegenerative disease, (2) pathology of the neostriatum disrupts syntactic organization, (3) adaptive strategies are used to cope with verbal and speech-motor difficulties, and (4) adaptive strategies fail to be effective with increasing disease severity.

  20. Unravelling and Exploiting Astrocyte Dysfunction in Huntington's Disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Khakh, Baljit S; Beaumont, Vahri; Cachope, Roger

    2017-01-01

    Astrocytes are abundant within mature neural circuits and are involved in brain disorders. Here, we summarize our current understanding of astrocytes and Huntington's disease (HD), with a focus on correlative and causative dysfunctions of ion homeostasis, calcium signaling, and neurotransmitter...

  1. Episodic Memory Decline in Huntington's Disease, A Binding Deficit?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    El Haj, M.; Caillaud, M.; Fasotti, L.; Verny, C.; Allain, P.

    2013-01-01

    Background: Huntington's disease (HD) is characterized by episodic memory deterioration. Objective: Our paper investigates the cognitive mechanisms that might underlie this decline. To this aim, we tested two executive hypotheses, the binding and the inhibition hypotheses. Methods: Fifteen HD

  2. Clinical manifestations of intermediate allele carriers in Huntington disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cubo, Esther; Ramos-Arroyo, María A; Martinez-Horta, Saul

    2016-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: There is controversy about the clinical consequences of intermediate alleles (IAs) in Huntington disease (HD). The main objective of this study was to establish the clinical manifestations of IA carriers for a prospective, international, European HD registry. METHODS: We assessed...... a cohort of participants at risk with Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS) motor, cognitive, and behavior domains, Total Functional Capacity (TFC), and quality of life (Short Form-36 [SF-36]). This cohort was subdivided...

  3. White matter predicts functional connectivity in premanifest Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McColgan, Peter; Gregory, Sarah; Razi, Adeel; Seunarine, Kiran K; Gargouri, Fatma; Durr, Alexandra; Roos, Raymund A C; Leavitt, Blair R; Scahill, Rachael I; Clark, Chris A; Tabrizi, Sarah J; Rees, Geraint; Coleman, A; Decolongon, J; Fan, M; Petkau, T; Jauffret, C; Justo, D; Lehericy, S; Nigaud, K; Valabrègue, R; Choonderbeek, A; Hart, E P T; Hensman Moss, D J; Crawford, H; Johnson, E; Papoutsi, M; Berna, C; Reilmann, R; Weber, N; Stout, J; Labuschagne, I; Landwehrmeyer, B; Orth, M; Johnson, H

    2017-02-01

    The distribution of pathology in neurodegenerative disease can be predicted by the organizational characteristics of white matter in healthy brains. However, we have very little evidence for the impact these pathological changes have on brain function. Understanding any such link between structure and function is critical for understanding how underlying brain pathology influences the progressive behavioral changes associated with neurodegeneration. Here, we demonstrate such a link between structure and function in individuals with premanifest Huntington's. Using diffusion tractography and resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging to characterize white matter organization and functional connectivity, we investigate whether characteristic patterns of white matter organization in the healthy human brain shape the changes in functional coupling between brain regions in premanifest Huntington's disease. We find changes in functional connectivity in premanifest Huntington's disease that link directly to underlying patterns of white matter organization in healthy brains. Specifically, brain areas with strong structural connectivity show decreases in functional connectivity in premanifest Huntington's disease relative to controls, while regions with weak structural connectivity show increases in functional connectivity. Furthermore, we identify a pattern of dissociation in the strongest functional connections between anterior and posterior brain regions such that anterior functional connectivity increases in strength in premanifest Huntington's disease, while posterior functional connectivity decreases. Our findings demonstrate that organizational principles of white matter underlie changes in functional connectivity in premanifest Huntington's disease. Furthermore, we demonstrate functional antero-posterior dissociation that is in keeping with the caudo-rostral gradient of striatal pathology in HD.

  4. Altered behavioral responses to gamma-aminobutyric acid pharmacological agents in a mouse model of Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsu, Yi-Ting; Chang, Ya-Gin; Chang, Ching-Pang; Siew, Jian-Jing; Chen, Hui-Mei; Tsai, Chon-Haw; Chern, Yijuang

    2017-08-07

    Disruptions in gamma-aminobutyric (GABA) acid signaling are believed to be involved in Huntington's disease pathogenesis, but the regulation of GABAergic signaling remains elusive. Here we evaluated GABAergic signaling by examining the function of GABAergic drugs in Huntington's disease and the expression of GABAergic molecules using mouse models and human brain tissues from Huntington's disease. We treated wild-type and R6/2 mice (a transgenic Huntington's disease mouse model) acutely with vehicle, diazepam, or gaboxadol (drugs that selectively target synaptic or extrasynaptic GABAA receptors) and monitored their locomotor activity. The expression levels of GABAA receptors and a major neuron-specific chloride extruder (potassium-chloride cotransporter-2) were analyzed by real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction, Western blot, and immunocytochemistry. The R6/2 mice were less sensitive to the sedative effects of both drugs, suggesting reduced function of GABAA receptors. Consistently, the expression levels of α1/α2 and δ subunits were lower in the cortex and striatum of R6/2 mice. Similar results were also found in 2 other mouse models of Huntington's disease and in Huntington's disease patients. Moreover, the interaction and expression levels of potassium-chloride cotransporter-2 and its activator (brain-type creatine kinase) were decreased in Huntington's disease neurons. These findings collectively suggest impaired chloride homeostasis, which further dampens GABAA receptor-mediated inhibitory signaling in Huntington's disease brains. The dysregulated GABAergic responses and altered expression levels of GABAA receptors and potassium-chloride cotransporter-2 in Huntington's disease mice appear to be authentic and may contribute to the clinical manifestations of Huntington's disease patients. © 2017 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society. © 2017 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society.

  5. The Frequency of Huntington Disease and Huntington Disease-Like 2 in the South African Population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baine, Fiona K; Krause, Amanda; Greenberg, L Jacquie

    2016-01-01

    Huntington disease (HD) has most recently been estimated to affect between 10.6 and 13.7 per 100,000 individuals in European populations. However, prevalence is known to differ geographically. In South Africa, the only published estimates are from a survey performed in the 1970s, an era when the disease was believed to be rare or absent in black individuals and molecular confirmation was absent. The disease phenotype in South Africa is currently attributable to mutations in both the huntington and junctophilin-3 genes, which underlie the well-known HD and the rarer HD-like 2 (HDL2) respectively. This study aimed at providing improved minimum estimates of disease frequency in South Africa, based on molecular genetic testing data. A review of all testing records for HD and HDL2 over a 20-year period was undertaken. HDL2 is virtually indistinguishable on clinical features, thus necessitating its inclusion. Based on molecular diagnostic records, minimum estimates of disease frequency are: 5.1, 2.1 and 0.25 (per 100,000 individuals) for the white, mixed ancestry and black population groups respectively. Although ascertainment remains incomplete, these minimum estimates suggest that disease frequencies are significantly higher than those previously reported in South Africa. © 2016 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  6. Striatal grafts in a rat model of Huntington's disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Guzman, R; Meyer, M; Lövblad, K O

    1999-01-01

    Survival and integration into the host brain of grafted tissue are crucial factors in neurotransplantation approaches. The present study explored the feasibility of using a clinical MR scanner to study striatal graft development in a rat model of Huntington's disease. Rat fetal lateral ganglionic...... eminences grown as free-floating roller-tube cultures can be successfully grafted in a rat Huntington model and that a clinical MR scanner offers a useful noninvasive tool for studying striatal graft development....

  7. Americo Negrette (1924 to 2003): diagnosing Huntington disease in Venezuela.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okun, Michael S; Thommi, Nia

    2004-07-27

    To elucidate the role of Dr. Americo Negrette in diagnosing and reclassifying the dancing mania in Maracaibo, Venezuela as Huntington disease (HD). All of the medical and nonmedical books and articles by Negrette were collected and reviewed. Personal interviews with Negrette were performed to confirm the details of his life and original work. His childhood, medical education, and contribution to HD, as well as contributions to medicine, art, and poetry, were covered in interview sessions. Excerpts from his autobiography, Ciudad de Fuego, were translated into English for publication. A complete bibliography of 70 books and research articles authored by Negrette was assembled. Negrette himself reviewed the compilation of this manuscript just days before his sudden death on September 14, 2003. Americo Negrette, a Venezuelan physician, biochemist, artist, and poet, observed a dancing epidemic in 1952. He acquired, through interviews with locals, the knowledge that there were two other small towns along Lake Maracaibo devastated by a syndrome called el mal (the bad). Negrette changed the diagnosis of these patients from a dancing mania to what he believed was Huntington chorea, later termed HD. He presented his findings at the Venezuelan Sixth Congress of Medical Science in 1955. He was met with reluctance in the local scientific community and a passive ear from government authorities. His description, written in Spanish, was not widely distributed beyond Venezuela, and its importance would have to wait until one of his students shared his observations (more than a decade later) with the HD research community and the rest of the world. The "dancing mania" of Maracaibo, because of the work of Americo Negrette, has been reclassified as Huntington disease.

  8. Ethical considerations of genetic presymptomatic testing for Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coustasse, Alberto; Pekar, Alicia; Sikula, Andrew; Lurie, Sue

    2009-01-01

    The aim of this literature review was to determine if there is adequate ethical justification for presymptomatic genetic testing on potential Huntington's disease patients. Huntington's disease is a neurological genetic disorder characterized by midlife onset which consists of cognitive, physical, and emotional deterioration. Although genetic testing has traditionally been guided by the principle of autonomy, severe psychological consequences such as depression, anxiety, survival guilt, and suicide have complicated the ethical issue of providing a presymptomatic yet definitive diagnosis for an incurable disease. An analysis of available articles yielded inconclusive findings, namely due to insufficient evidence, self-selection bias of test participants, or lack of a longitudinal design. Additional results indicated psychological distress is not solely associated with test result, but rather with individual characteristics including, but not limited to, psychological history, test motivation, level of preparation, social support, and age. In the interest of upholding the principles of autonomy, beneficence, nonmaleficence, and justice, it is recommended that medical professionals follow strict protocol, provide extensive counseling, and employ vigilance when assessing at-risk individuals for HD presymptomatic test eligibility to ensure psychological well-being.

  9. Disease stage, but not sex, predicts depression and psychological distress in Huntington's disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dale, Maria; Maltby, John; Shimozaki, Steve

    2016-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: Depression and anxiety significantly affect morbidity in Huntington's disease. Mice. models of Huntington's disease have identified sex differences in mood-like behaviours that vary across disease lifespan, but this interaction has not previously been explored in humans with Huntington...... disease stage and sex, either separately or as an interaction term, predicted anxiety and depression in Huntington's disease. METHODS: A cross-sectional study of REGISTRY data involving 453 Huntington's disease participants from 12 European countries was undertaken using the Hospital Anxiety...... depressive symptoms and general distress. Neither disease stage nor sex predicted anxiety. Furthermore, an interaction term computed for disease stage and sex did not contribute to the models tested. CONCLUSION: In terms of considering risks to developing depression and anxiety in the Huntington's disease...

  10. Huntington's disease biomarker progression profile identified by transcriptome sequencing in peripheral blood.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mastrokolias, Anastasios; Ariyurek, Yavuz; Goeman, Jelle J; van Duijn, Erik; Roos, Raymund A C; van der Mast, Roos C; van Ommen, GertJan B; den Dunnen, Johan T; 't Hoen, Peter A C; van Roon-Mom, Willeke M C

    2015-10-01

    With several therapeutic approaches in development for Huntington's disease, there is a need for easily accessible biomarkers to monitor disease progression and therapy response. We performed next-generation sequencing-based transcriptome analysis of total RNA from peripheral blood of 91 mutation carriers (27 presymptomatic and, 64 symptomatic) and 33 controls. Transcriptome analysis by DeepSAGE identified 167 genes significantly associated with clinical total motor score in Huntington's disease patients. Relative to previous studies, this yielded novel genes and confirmed previously identified genes, such as H2AFY, an overlap in results that has proven difficult in the past. Pathway analysis showed enrichment of genes of the immune system and target genes of miRNAs, which are downregulated in Huntington's disease models. Using a highly parallelized microfluidics array chip (Fluidigm), we validated 12 of the top 20 significant genes in our discovery cohort and 7 in a second independent cohort. The five genes (PROK2, ZNF238, AQP9, CYSTM1 and ANXA3) that were validated independently in both cohorts present a candidate biomarker panel for stage determination and therapeutic readout in Huntington's disease. Finally we suggest a first empiric formula predicting total motor score from the expression levels of our biomarker panel. Our data support the view that peripheral blood is a useful source to identify biomarkers for Huntington's disease and monitor disease progression in future clinical trials.

  11. Investigational agents for the management of Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Müller, Thomas

    2017-02-01

    An inherited, chronic progressive, neurodegenerative disorder is Huntington's disease, characterized by motor, cognitive, and psychiatric symptoms. Predictive genetic testing allows earlier diagnosis and identification of gene carriers for Huntington's disease. These individuals are ideal candidates for testing of therapeutic interventions for disease modification. Areas covered: According to queries in Pubmed, Embase and clinical register databases, research and clinical studies emerge on symptomatic and neuroprotective therapies in Huntington's disease. This review discusses novel agents for symptomatic therapy and disease modification. They are currently in phase I and II of drug development Expert opinion: There are promising, safe and well tolerated compounds for amelioration of motor and neuropsychiatric symptoms, but their efficacy still needs to be proven in clinical trials. Deterioration of mutant huntingtin expression, antiapoptotic or cell death inhibition as disease modifying concepts was efficacious in models of Huntington's disease. However, the risk for clinical trial failures is high not only due to ineffectiveness of the tested agent. Negative study outcomes may also result from design misconceptions, underestimation of the heterogeneity of Huntington's disease, too short study durations and too small study cohorts.

  12. Huntington disease and Huntington disease-like in a case series from Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castilhos, R M; Souza, A F D; Furtado, G V; Gheno, T C; Silva, A L; Vargas, F R; Lima, M-A F D; Barsottini, O; Pedroso, J L; Godeiro, C; Salarini, D; Pereira, E T; Lin, K; Toralles, M-B; Saute, J A M; Rieder, C R; Quintas, M; Sequeiros, J; Alonso, I; Saraiva-Pereira, M L; Jardim, L B

    2014-10-01

    The aim of this study was to identify the relative frequency of Huntington's disease (HD) and HD-like (HDL) disorders HDL1, HDL2, spinocerebellar ataxia type 2 (SCA2), SCA17, dentatorubral-pallidoluysian degeneration (DRPLA), benign hereditary chorea, neuroferritinopathy and chorea-acanthocytosis (CHAC), in a series of Brazilian families. Patients were recruited in seven centers if they or their relatives presented at least chorea, besides other findings. Molecular studies of HTT, ATXN2, TBP, ATN1, JPH3, FTL, NKX2-1/TITF1 and VPS13A genes were performed. A total of 104 families were ascertained from 2001 to 2012: 71 families from South, 25 from Southeast and 8 from Northeast Brazil. There were 93 HD, 4 HDL2 and 1 SCA2 families. Eleven of 104 index cases did not have a family history: 10 with HD. Clinical characteristics were similar between HD and non-HD cases. In HD, the median expanded (CAG)n (range) was 44 (40-81) units; R(2) between expanded HTT and age-at-onset (AO) was 0.55 (p=0.0001, Pearson). HDL2 was found in Rio de Janeiro (2 of 9 families) and Rio Grande do Sul states (2 of 68 families). We detected HD in 89.4%, HDL2 in 3.8% and SCA2 in 1% of 104 Brazilian families. There were no cases of HDL1, SCA17, DRPLA, neuroferritinopathy, benign hereditary chorea or CHAC. Only six families (5.8%) remained without diagnosis. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  13. The role of tau in the pathological process and clinical expression of Huntington's disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vuono, Romina; Winder-Rhodes, Sophie; de Silva, Rohan

    2015-01-01

    in Huntington's disease. We explored this association in more detail at the neuropathological, genetic and clinical level. We first investigated tau pathology by looking for the presence of hyperphosphorylated tau aggregates, co-localization of tau with mutant HTT and its oligomeric intermediates in post...... not only on the tau pathology in the Huntington's disease brain but also the association between genetic variation in tau gene and the clinical expression and progression of the disease. We found extensive pathological inclusions containing abnormally phosphorylated tau protein that co-localized in some...... instances with mutant HTT. We confirmed this related to the disease process rather than age, by showing it is also present in two patients with young-onset Huntington's disease (26 and 40 years old at death). In addition we demonstrate that tau oligomers (suggested to be the most likely neurotoxic tau...

  14. Cognitive Dysfunction Contributes to Mobility Impairments in Huntington's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kloos, Anne D; Kegelmeyer, Deb A; Fritz, Nora E; Daley, Allison M; Young, Gregory S; Kostyk, Sandra K

    2017-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder that results in a gradual decline in mobility and balance. Increasing evidence has documented an important role of executive function in the safe ambulation of the elderly and people with a variety of neurological disorders. Little is known about the contribution of cognitive deficits to decline in mobility over time in HD. This study examined the relationships of mobility, motor and cognitive function measures at baseline, and of mobility and cognitive measures over four years. A retrospective chart review was performed on 70 patients with genetically confirmed HD (age 20-75 years old) across 121 HD clinic visits. Correlations between Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale - Total Motor, Tinetti Mobility Test (TMT), and cognitive measures (Letter Verbal Fluency, Symbol Digit Modalities Test (SDMT), and Stroop Test) were analyzed. Longitudinal relationships between TMT and cognitive measures were examined using mixed effect regression models. Gait and balance measures representing domains of mobility (TMT scores) were significantly correlated with each of the cognitive measures with the exception of the Verbal Fluency score. Mixed effects regression modeling showed that the Stroop Interference sub-test and SDMT were significant predictors (p-values <0.01) of TMT total scores. Impairments in executive function measures correlate highly with measures of gait, balance and mobility in individuals with HD. Interventions designed to improve mobility and decrease fall risk should also address issues of cognitive impairments with particular consideration given to interventions that may focus on motor-cognitive dual task training.

  15. The p. R151C Polymorphism in MC1R Gene Modifies the Age of Onset in Spanish Huntington's Disease Patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tell-Marti, Gemma; Puig-Butille, Joan Anton; Gimenez-Xavier, Pol; Segu-Roig, Ariadna; Potrony, Miriam; Badenas, Celia; Alvarez, Victoria; Millán, José M; Trujillo-Tiebas, María José; Ramos-Arroyo, María A; Milà, Montserrat; Puig, Susana

    2017-07-01

    The expansion of CAG repeats (≥36 CAG) in the HTT gene is the only known genetic cause of Huntington's disease (HD) and the main determinant of the course of the disease. The length of the expanded CAG repeats correlates inversely with the age of onset (AOO) but does not completely determine it. We investigated the role of the melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R) gene as a modifier factor of AOO in 600 HD patients from Spain. We sequenced the entire region of the MC1R gene and analyzed all the nonsynonymous MC1R genetic variants with a minor allele frequency of at least 0.01 in HD patients. The variability in AOO attributable to the CAG repeats and MC1R polymorphisms was evaluated using a multiple linear regression model. We found that the loss-of-function p. R151C MC1R polymorphism has a significant influence on the AOO (P = 0.004; Bonferroni-corrected P = 0.032) which explains 1.42% of the variance in AOO that cannot be accounted for by the expanded CAG repeat. Our results suggest that the MC1R gene could modify the AOO in Spanish HD patients and encourage the evaluation of loss-of-function MC1R polymorphisms in other HD populations with a higher frequency of these MC1R polymorphisms.

  16. Music therapy in Huntington's disease: a protocol for a multi-center randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Bruggen-Rufi, Monique; Vink, Annemieke; Achterberg, Wilco; Roos, Raymund

    2016-07-26

    Huntington's disease is a progressive, neurodegenerative disease with autosomal dominant inheritance, characterized by motor disturbances, cognitive decline and behavioral and psychological symptoms. Since there is no cure, all treatment is aimed at improving quality of life. Music therapy is a non-pharmacological intervention, aiming to improve the quality of life, but its use and efficacy in patients with Huntington's disease has hardly been studied. In this article, a protocol is described to study the effects of music therapy in comparison with a control intervention to improve quality of life through stimulating expressive and communicative skills. By targeting these skills we assume that the social-cognitive functioning will improve, leading to a reduction in behavioral problems, resulting in an overall improvement of the quality of life in patients with Huntington's disease. The study is designed as a multi-center single-blind randomised controlled intervention trial. Sixty patients will be randomised using centre-stratified block-permuted randomisation. Patients will be recruited from four long-term care facilities specialized in Huntington's disease-care in The Netherlands. The outcome measure to assess changes in expressive and communication skills is the Behaviour Observation Scale Huntington and changes in behavior will be assessed by the Problem Behaviour Assesment-short version and by the BOSH. Measurements take place at baseline, then 8, 16 (end of intervention) and 12 weeks after the last intervention (follow-up). This randomized controlled study will provide greater insight into the effectiveness of music therapy on activities of daily living, social-cognitive functioning and behavior problems by improving expressive and communication skills, thus leading to a better quality of life for patients with Huntington's disease. Netherlands Trial Register: NTR4904 , registration date Nov. 15, 2014.

  17. Everyday cognition in prodromal Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Janet K; Kim, Ji-In; Downing, Nancy; Farias, Sarah; Harrington, Deborah L; Long, Jeffrey D; Mills, James A; Paulsen, Jane S

    2015-03-01

    Assessment of daily functions affected by cognitive loss in prodromal Huntington's disease (HD) is necessary in practice and clinical trials. We evaluated baseline and longitudinal sensitivity of the Everyday Cognition (ECog) scales in prodromal HD and compared self- and companion-ratings. Everyday cognition was self-assessed by 850 participants with prodromal HD and 768 companions. We examined internal structure using confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) on baseline data. For longitudinal analysis, we stratified participants into Low, Medium, and High disease progression groups. We examined ECog scores for group differences and participant-and-companion differences using linear mixed effects regression (LMER). Comparison with the Total Functional Capacity (TFC) scale was made. CFA revealed good fit of a 5-factor model having a global factor (total score), and subfactors (subscales) of memory, language, visuospatial perception, and executive function. At study entry, participants and companions in the Medium and High groups reported significantly worsened everyday cognition as well as significant functional decline over time. Losses became more pronounced and participant and companion ratings diverged as individuals progressed. TFC showed significant functional loss over time in the High group but not in the Medium group. Disease progression is associated with reduced self- and companion-reported everyday cognition in prodromal HD participants who are less than 13 years to estimated motor onset. Our findings suggest companion ratings are more sensitive than participants' for detecting longitudinal change in daily cognitive function. ECog appears more sensitive to specific functional changes in the prodrome of HD than the TFC. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved.

  18. Reduced gluconeogenesis and lactate clearance in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Josefsen, Knud; Nielsen, Signe M B; Campos, André; Seifert, Thomas; Hasholt, Lis; Nielsen, Jørgen E; Nørremølle, Anne; Skotte, Niels H; Secher, Niels H; Quistorff, Bjørn

    2010-12-01

    We studied systemic and brain glucose and lactate metabolism in Huntington's disease (HD) patients in response to ergometer cycling. Following termination of exercise, blood glucose increased abruptly in control subjects, but no peak was seen in any of the HD patients (2.0 ± 0.5 vs. 0.0 ± 0.2mM, P < 2 × 10(-6)). No difference was seen in brain metabolism parameters. Reduced hepatic glucose output in the HD mouse model R6/2 following a lactate challenge, combined with reduced phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase and increased pyruvate kinase activity in the mouse liver suggest a reduced capacity for gluconeogenesis in HD, possibly contributing to the clinical symptoms of HD. We propose that blood glucose concentration in the recovery from exercise can be applied as a liver function test in HD patients. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Evidence for Deficits on Different Components of Theory of Mind in Huntington's Disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Allain, P.; Havel-Thomassin, V.; Verny, C.; Gohier, B.; Lancelot, C.; Besnard, J.; Fasotti, L.; Le Gall, D.

    2011-01-01

    Objective: The main aim of this study was to investigate the effects of Huntington's disease (HD) on cognitive and affective Theory of Mind (ToM) abilities. The relation of ToM performance and executive functions was also examined. Method: Eighteen HD patients, early in the course of the disease,

  20. Remifentanil in a patient with Huntington's chorea

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Adele

    Huntington's chorea (HC), a rare hereditary degenerative neurological disorder associated with progressive dementia, ataxia and involuntary choreiform movements, was first described in April 1872 by Dr George Sumner Huntington1, a year after he graduated from Columbia University Medical. School. Published case ...

  1. Gene Therapy-Based Modeling of Neurodegenerative Disorders: Huntington's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Deborah

    2016-01-01

    Huntington's disease is a fatal neurodegenerative disease characterized by impairments in motor control, and cognitive and psychiatric disturbances. In this chapter, viral vector-mediated approaches used in modeling the key neuropathological features of the disease including the production of abnormal intracellular protein aggregates, neuronal dysfunction and degeneration and motor impairments in rodents are described.

  2. Huntington's disease-like and ataxia syndromes: identification of a family with a de novo SCA17/TBP mutation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bech, Sara; Petersen, Thor; Nørremølle, Anne

    2010-01-01

    tract in the respective proteins. SCA17 is caused by a CAG/CAA repeat expansion in the TATA box-binding protein-gene (TBP). In some cases the clinical phenotype of SCA17 overlaps that of Huntington's disease (HD), hence the use of the term Huntington's disease-like. We screened 89 patients...... with a Huntington's disease-like phenotype without the HD-gene mutation and 178 patients with genetically unclassified cerebellar ataxia for the mutation in TBP. A 33-year old woman presenting with an HD like phenotype with a de novo 54 CAG/CAA repeat expansion was identified. Her normal allele included 38 repeats....... The patient's mother and father both carried normal range repeats, 38/38 and 33/39 respectively. Analysis of the repeat structures revealed that the expansion had occurred upon expansion of the longer paternal allele. We conclude that, however rare, SCA17 must be considered as a cause of Huntington's disease...

  3. Caregiver roles in families affected by Huntington's disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Røthing, Merete; Malterud, Kirsti; Frich, Jan C

    2013-01-01

    AIM: The objective of this study was to explore family caregivers' experiences with the impact of Huntington's disease (HD) on the family structure and roles in the family. METHODOLOGY: We interviewed 15 family caregivers in families affected by HD, based on a semi-structured interview guide....... The participants were recruited through hospital departments and a lay organisation for HD in Norway. Data from the interviews were analysed with systematic text condensation. RESULTS: Huntington's disease could have a substantial impact on the family system, the shape of roles among family members......: Huntington's disease has a major impact on family systems. Caregiver roles are shaped by impairments in the affected family member and corresponding dynamic adoption and change in roles within the family. Making assessments of the family structure and roles, professionals may understand more about how...

  4. Velocity modulation and rhythmic synchronization of gait in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thaut, M H; Miltner, R; Lange, H W; Hurt, C P; Hoemberg, V

    1999-09-01

    This study analyzed the ability of patients with Huntington's disease (HD) to modulate gait velocity without external sensory cues and in response to an auditory rhythmic cue within a frequency entrainment design. Uncued gait patterns of 27 patients were first assessed during normal, slower, and faster self-paced walking. During rhythmic trials, metronome and musical beat patterns were delivered at rates 10% slower and 10-20% faster than baseline cadence to cue gait patterns. After the rhythmic trials, patients were retested at normal gait speed without rhythm. Gait velocities in the patients with HD were below normal reference values in all ranges. Patients were able to significantly (p music. The ability to modulate gait velocity was retained regardless of the severity of the disease. Gait velocity declined with an increase in disability and chorea score. The disability score differentiated better between gait velocity of moderately and severe patients than chorea score. Slowness of gait was significantly correlated only with disability score and not with chorea. Patients had more difficulty producing adequate step rates than stride lengths during normal and fast walking speeds. After the rhythmic trials, unpaced gait velocity remained significantly (p music declined more with severity of disease than metronome tracking. In summary, patients were able to modulate velocity with and without external cues. Velocity adaptations to the external rhythm in music and metronome were achieved without exact synchronization between step cadence and rhythmic stimulus.

  5. Unmet needs for healthcare and social support services in patients with Huntington's disease: a cross-sectional population-based study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Walsem, Marleen R; Howe, Emilie I; Iversen, Kristin; Frich, Jan C; Andelic, Nada

    2015-09-28

    In order to plan and improve provision of comprehensive care in Huntington's disease (HD), it is critical to understand the gaps in healthcare and social support services provided to HD patients. Research has described utilization of healthcare services in HD in Europe, however, studies systematically examining needs for healthcare services and social support are lacking. This study aims to identify the level and type of met and unmet needs for health and social care services among patients with HD, and explore associated clinical and socio-demographic factors. Eighty-six patients with a clinical diagnosis of HD living in the South-Eastern region of Norway were recruited. Socio-demographic and clinical characteristics were collected. The Needs and Provision Complexity Scale (NPCS) was used to assess the patients' needs for healthcare and social services. Functional ability and disease stage was assessed using the UHDRS Functional assessment scales. In order to investigate factors determining the level of total unmet needs and the level of unmet needs for Health and personal care and Social care and support services, multivariate logistic regression models were used. A high level of unmet needs for health and personal care and social support services were found across all five disease stages, but most marked in disease stage III. The middle phase (disease stage III) and advanced phase (disease stages IV and V) of HD increased odds of having a high level of total unmet needs by 3.5 times and 1.4 times respectively, compared with the early phase (disease stages I and II). Similar results were found for level of unmet needs in the domain Health and personal care. Higher education tended to decrease odds of high level of unmet needs in this domain (OR = 0.48) and increase odds of higher level of unmet needs in the domain of Social care and support (OR = 1.3). Patients reporting needs on their own tended to decrease odds of having unmet needs in Health and

  6. Family caregivers' views on coordination of care in Huntington's disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Røthing, Merete; Malterud, Kirsti; Frich, Jan C

    2015-01-01

    's illness may be unpredictable or not well understood by some of those involved in the treatment and care. AIM: The aim of this study was to explore the experiences and expectations of family caregivers for persons with Huntington's disease concerning collaboration with healthcare professionals. METHODS......: To shed light on collaboration from the perspectives of family caregivers, we conducted an explorative, qualitative interview study with 15 adult participants experienced from caring for family members in all stages of Huntington's disease. Data were analysed with systematic text condensation, a cross...

  7. Expression pattern of apoptosis-related markers in Huntington's disease.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vis, J.C.; Schipper, E.; Boer-van Huizen, R.T. de; Verbeek, M.M.; Waal, R.M.W. de; Wesseling, P.; Donkelaar, H.J. ten; Kremer, H.P.H.

    2005-01-01

    Inappropriate apoptosis has been implicated in the mechanism of neuronal death in Huntington's disease (HD). In this study, we report the expression of apoptotic markers in HD caudate nucleus (grades 1-4) and compare this with controls without neurological disease. Terminal transferase-mediated

  8. Expression pattern of apoptosis-related markers in Huntington's disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vis, José C; Schipper, Ellis; de Boer-van Huizen, Roelie T; Verbeek, Marcel M; de Waal, Rob M W; Wesseling, Pieter; ten Donkelaar, Hans J; Kremer, Berry

    2005-01-01

    Inappropriate apoptosis has been implicated in the mechanism of neuronal death in Huntington's disease (HD). In this study, we report the expression of apoptotic markers in HD caudate nucleus (grades 1-4) and compare this with controls without neurological disease. Terminal transferase-mediated

  9. Validation of a prognostic index for Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Long, Jeffrey D; Langbehn, Douglas R; Tabrizi, Sarah J; Landwehrmeyer, Bernhard G; Paulsen, Jane S; Warner, John; Sampaio, Cristina

    2017-02-01

    Characterizing progression in Huntington's disease is important for study the natural course and selecting appropriate participants for clinical trials. The aim was to develop a prognostic index for motor diagnosis in Huntington's disease and examine its predictive performance in external observational studies. The prediagnosis Neuro-biological Predictors of Huntington's Disease study (N = 945 gene-positive) was used to select a Cox regression model for computing a prognostic index. Cross-validation was used for selecting a model with good internal validity performance using the research sites as natural splits of the data set. Then, the external predictive performance was assessed using prediagnosis data from three additional observational studies, The Cooperative Huntington Observational Research Trial (N = 358), TRACK-HD (N = 118), and REGISTRY (N = 480). Model selection yielded a prognostic index computed as the weighted combination of the UHDRS total motor score, Symbol Digit Modalities Test, baseline age, and cytosine-adenine-guanine expansion. External predictive performance was very good for the first two of the three studies, with the third being a much more progressed cohort than the other studies. The databases were pooled and a final Cox regression model was estimated. The regression coefficients were scaled to produce the prognostic index for Huntington's disease, and a normed version, which is scaled relative to a 10-year 50% probability of motor diagnosis. The positive results of this comprehensive validity analysis provide evidence that the prognostic index is generally useful for predicting Huntington's disease progression in terms of risk of future motor diagnosis. The variables for the index are routinely collected in ongoing observational studies and the index can be used to identify cohorts for clinical trial recruitment. © 2016 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society. © 2016 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society.

  10. Impaired antagonist inhibition may contribute to akinesia and bradykinesia in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Vugt, J P P; Stijl, M; Roos, R A C; van Dijk, J G

    2003-02-01

    To test the hypothesis that besides impaired agonist facilitation, impaired antagonist inhibition also contributes to delayed initiation (akinesia) and slow execution (bradykinesia) of voluntary movements in Huntington's disease. Fifteen patients with Huntington's disease and 11 age-matched controls participated in the study. The amount of agonist facilitation was measured as the increase in soleus H-reflex amplitude prior to ballistic voluntary plantar flexion (soleus contraction). Antagonist inhibition was measured as the decrease in soleus H-reflex prior to ballistic dorsiflexion (tibialis anterior (TA) contraction). The amount of agonist facilitation and antagonist inhibition was correlated with the time needed for motor initiation (reaction time) and movement execution (movement time). Starting 50ms prior to soleus contraction, soleus H-reflex increased in control subjects but less so in patients. Soleus H-reflexes decreased in controls 25ms prior to TA contraction, while this antagonist inhibition was completely lacking in patients. Thus, patients with Huntington's disease not only displayed reduced agonist facilitation, but impaired antagonist inhibition as well. Moreover, more impairment of antagonist inhibition correlated significantly with more severe akinesia and bradykinesia. Antagonist inhibition prior to and during agonist contractions is markedly impaired in Huntington's disease. This impairment might contribute to motor slowness in these patients.

  11. Placebo effect characteristics observed in a single, international, longitudinal study in Huntington's disease.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cubo, E.; Gonzalez, M.; Puerto, I. del; Yebenes, J.G. de; Arconada, O.F.; Gabriel y Galan, J.M.; Kremer, H.P.H.; Warrenburg, B.P.C. van de; et al.,

    2012-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Classically, clinical trials are based on the placebo-control design. Our aim was to analyze the placebo effect in Huntington's disease. METHODS: Placebo data were obtained from an international, longitudinal, placebo-controlled trial for Huntington's disease (European Huntington's

  12. Predictive gene testing for Huntington disease and other neurodegenerative disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wedderburn, S; Panegyres, P K; Andrew, S; Goldblatt, J; Liebeck, T; McGrath, F; Wiltshire, M; Pestell, C; Lee, J; Beilby, J

    2013-12-01

    Controversies exist around predictive testing (PT) programmes in neurodegenerative disorders. This study sets out to answer the following questions relating to Huntington disease (HD) and other neurodegenerative disorders: differences between these patients in their PT journeys, why and when individuals withdraw from PT, and decision-making processes regarding reproductive genetic testing. A case series analysis of patients having PT from the multidisciplinary Western Australian centre for PT over the past 20 years was performed using internationally recognised guidelines for predictive gene testing in neurodegenerative disorders. Of 740 at-risk patients, 518 applied for PT: 466 at risk of HD, 52 at risk of other neurodegenerative disorders - spinocerebellar ataxias, hereditary prion disease and familial Alzheimer disease. Thirteen percent withdrew from PT - 80.32% of withdrawals occurred during counselling stages. Major withdrawal reasons related to timing in the patients' lives or unknown as the patient did not disclose the reason. Thirty-eight HD individuals had reproductive genetic testing: 34 initiated prenatal testing (of which eight withdrew from the process) and four initiated pre-implantation genetic diagnosis. There was no recorded or other evidence of major psychological reactions or suicides during PT. People withdrew from PT in relation to life stages and reasons that are unknown. Our findings emphasise the importance of: (i) adherence to internationally recommended guidelines for PT; (ii) the role of the multidisciplinary team in risk minimisation; and (iii) patient selection. © 2013 The Authors; Internal Medicine Journal © 2013 Royal Australasian College of Physicians.

  13. A 24-Hour Study of the Hypothalamo-Pituitary Axes in Huntington's Disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eirini Kalliolia

    Full Text Available Huntington's disease is an inherited neurodegenerative disorder characterised by motor, cognitive and psychiatric disturbances. Patients exhibit other symptoms including sleep and mood disturbances, muscle atrophy and weight loss which may be linked to hypothalamic pathology and dysfunction of hypothalamo-pituitary axes.We studied neuroendocrine profiles of corticotropic, somatotropic and gonadotropic hypothalamo-pituitary axes hormones over a 24-hour period in controlled environment in 15 healthy controls, 14 premanifest and 13 stage II/III Huntington's disease subjects. We also quantified fasting levels of vasopressin, oestradiol, testosterone, dehydroepiandrosterone sulphate, thyroid stimulating hormone, free triiodothyronine, free total thyroxine, prolactin, adrenaline and noradrenaline. Somatotropic axis hormones, growth hormone releasing hormone, insulin-like growth factor-1 and insulin-like factor binding protein-3 were quantified at 06:00 (fasting, 15:00 and 23:00. A battery of clinical tests, including neurological rating and function scales were performed.24-hour concentrations of adrenocorticotropic hormone, cortisol, luteinizing hormone and follicle-stimulating hormone did not differ significantly between the Huntington's disease group and controls. Daytime growth hormone secretion was similar in control and Huntington's disease subjects. Stage II/III Huntington's disease subjects had lower concentration of post-sleep growth hormone pulse and higher insulin-like growth factor-1:growth hormone ratio which did not reach significance. In Huntington's disease subjects, baseline levels of hypothalamo-pituitary axis hormones measured did not significantly differ from those of healthy controls.The relatively small subject group means that the study may not detect subtle perturbations in hormone concentrations. A targeted study of the somatotropic axis in larger cohorts may be warranted. However, the lack of significant results despite many

  14. Increased TRPC5 glutathionylation contributes to striatal neuron loss in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hong, Chansik; Seo, Hyemyung; Kwak, Misun; Jeon, Jeha; Jang, Jihoon; Jeong, Eui Man; Myeong, Jongyun; Hwang, Yu Jin; Ha, Kotdaji; Kang, Min Jueng; Lee, Kyu Pil; Yi, Eugene C; Kim, In-Gyu; Jeon, Ju-Hong; Ryu, Hoon; So, Insuk

    2015-10-01

    Aberrant glutathione or Ca(2+) homeostasis due to oxidative stress is associated with the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative disorders. The Ca(2+)-permeable transient receptor potential cation (TRPC) channel is predominantly expressed in the brain, which is sensitive to oxidative stress. However, the role of the TRPC channel in neurodegeneration is not known. Here, we report a mechanism of TRPC5 activation by oxidants and the effect of glutathionylated TRPC5 on striatal neurons in Huntington's disease. Intracellular oxidized glutathione leads to TRPC5 activation via TRPC5 S-glutathionylation at Cys176/Cys178 residues. The oxidized glutathione-activated TRPC5-like current results in a sustained increase in cytosolic Ca(2+), activated calmodulin-dependent protein kinase and the calpain-caspase pathway, ultimately inducing striatal neuronal cell death. We observed an abnormal glutathione pool indicative of an oxidized state in the striatum of Huntington's disease transgenic (YAC128) mice. Increased levels of endogenous TRPC5 S-glutathionylation were observed in the striatum in both transgenic mice and patients with Huntington's disease. Both knockdown and inhibition of TRPC5 significantly attenuated oxidation-induced striatal neuronal cell death. Moreover, a TRPC5 blocker improved rearing behaviour in Huntington's disease transgenic mice and motor behavioural symptoms in littermate control mice by increasing striatal neuron survival. Notably, low levels of TRPC1 increased the formation of TRPC5 homotetramer, a highly Ca(2+)-permeable channel, and stimulated Ca(2+)-dependent apoptosis in Huntington's disease cells (STHdh(Q111/111)). Taken together, these novel findings indicate that increased TRPC5 S-glutathionylation by oxidative stress and decreased TRPC1 expression contribute to neuronal damage in the striatum and may underlie neurodegeneration in Huntington's disease. © The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain

  15. A 24-Hour Study of the Hypothalamo-Pituitary Axes in Huntington's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalliolia, Eirini; Silajdžić, Edina; Nambron, Rajasree; Costelloe, Seán J; Martin, Nicholas G; Hill, Nathan R; Frost, Chris; Watt, Hilary C; Hindmarsh, Peter; Björkqvist, Maria; Warner, Thomas T

    2015-01-01

    Huntington's disease is an inherited neurodegenerative disorder characterised by motor, cognitive and psychiatric disturbances. Patients exhibit other symptoms including sleep and mood disturbances, muscle atrophy and weight loss which may be linked to hypothalamic pathology and dysfunction of hypothalamo-pituitary axes. We studied neuroendocrine profiles of corticotropic, somatotropic and gonadotropic hypothalamo-pituitary axes hormones over a 24-hour period in controlled environment in 15 healthy controls, 14 premanifest and 13 stage II/III Huntington's disease subjects. We also quantified fasting levels of vasopressin, oestradiol, testosterone, dehydroepiandrosterone sulphate, thyroid stimulating hormone, free triiodothyronine, free total thyroxine, prolactin, adrenaline and noradrenaline. Somatotropic axis hormones, growth hormone releasing hormone, insulin-like growth factor-1 and insulin-like factor binding protein-3 were quantified at 06:00 (fasting), 15:00 and 23:00. A battery of clinical tests, including neurological rating and function scales were performed. 24-hour concentrations of adrenocorticotropic hormone, cortisol, luteinizing hormone and follicle-stimulating hormone did not differ significantly between the Huntington's disease group and controls. Daytime growth hormone secretion was similar in control and Huntington's disease subjects. Stage II/III Huntington's disease subjects had lower concentration of post-sleep growth hormone pulse and higher insulin-like growth factor-1:growth hormone ratio which did not reach significance. In Huntington's disease subjects, baseline levels of hypothalamo-pituitary axis hormones measured did not significantly differ from those of healthy controls. The relatively small subject group means that the study may not detect subtle perturbations in hormone concentrations. A targeted study of the somatotropic axis in larger cohorts may be warranted. However, the lack of significant results despite many variables being

  16. Wishes for the end of life in Huntington's Disease. Observations and reflections, initiated in The Netherlands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Booij, Suzanne José

    2014-01-01

    Euthanasia and physicia-assisted suicide are possible in case of Huntington's Disease, also based on an advance directive. Requirements to make this possible are a sound and possibly longstanding physician-patient relationship. Secondly a thorough knowlegde of the requirements of due care is

  17. Functional Compensation of Motor Function in Pre-Symptomatic Huntington's Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kloppel, Stefan; Draganski, Bogdan; Siebner, Hartwig R.; Tabrizi, Sarah J.; Weiller, Cornelius; Frackowiak, Richard S. J.

    2009-01-01

    Involuntary choreiform movements are a clinical hallmark of Huntington's disease. Studies in clinically affected patients suggest a shift of motor activations to parietal cortices in response to progressive neurodegeneration. Here, we studied pre-symptomatic gene carriers to examine the compensatory mechanisms that underlie the phenomenon of…

  18. Characterisation of aggression in Huntington's disease: rates, types and antecedents in an inpatient rehabilitation setting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Anahita; Sewell, Katherine; Fisher, Caroline A

    2017-10-01

    To systematically review aggression in an inpatient Huntington's cohort examining rates, types and antecedents. Although the prevalence of aggression in Huntington's disease is high, research into this problematic behaviour has been limited. Few studies have investigated the nature of aggressive behaviour in Huntington's disease or antecedents that contribute to its occurrence. A systematic, double-coded, electronic medical file audit. The electronic hospital medical records of 10 people with Huntington's disease admitted to a brain disorders unit were audited for a 90-day period using the Overt Aggression Scale-Modified for Neurorehabilitation framework, yielding 900 days of clinical data. Nine of 10 clients exhibited aggression during the audit period. Both verbal (37·1%) aggression and physical aggression were common (33·8%), along with episodes of mixed verbal and physical aggression (15·2%), while aggression to objects/furniture was less prevalent (5·5%). The most common antecedent was physical guidance with personal care, far exceeding any other documented antecedents, and acting as the most common trigger for four of the nine clients who exhibited aggression. For the remaining five clients, there was intraindividual heterogeneity in susceptibility to specific antecedents. In Huntington's sufferers at mid- to late stages following disease onset, particular care should be made with personal care assistance due to the propensity for these procedures to elicit an episode of aggression. However, given the degree of intraindividual heterogeneity in susceptibility to specific antecedents observed in the present study, individualised behaviour support plans and sensory modulation interventions may be the most useful in identifying triggers and managing aggressive episodes. Rates of aggression in Huntington's disease inpatients can be high. Knowledge of potential triggers, such as personal care, is important for nursing and care staff, so that attempts can be

  19. The Many Facets of Unawareness in Huntington Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth McCusker

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Background: Unawareness or diminished awareness is present when a patient's perception of obvious disease manifestations and impact differ from that of observers such as clinicians or family members.Methods: We examined studies that specifically investigate unawareness in Huntington disease (HD.Results: Unawareness of motor, cognitive, behavioral, and functional aspects of HD has been documented throughout the disease course. This can occur at motor and cognitive onset but is more pronounced as the disease progresses.Discussion: We discuss the implications for diagnosis, symptom report at presentation, timing of diagnosis, acceptance of symptomatic care strategies, and reporting in clinical trials. Assessments of work place competency, discrimination, driving, and the particular challenges of isolated patients without caregivers are described. Engaging with a person who is unaware of their disease or its impact presents a number of conflicts, including maintaining the right to autonomy, privacy, confidentiality, and independence while recognizing concerns for the wellbeing of the vulnerable person with HD and their caregiver when the unaware person refuses assistance. Unawareness is seen increasingly as neurologically based due to the impairment of functional networks, predominantly in nondominant frontostriatal pathways.

  20. Ethical issues and Huntington's disease | Kromberg | South African ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The practice of genetic counselling gives rise to many ethical dilemmas, and counsellors need to be familiar with the principles of biomedical ethics. The primary principles include respect for autonomy, beneficence, non-maleficence and justice. A case of identical twins at 50% risk for Huntington's disease, in which only one ...

  1. Biological Markers of Cognition in Prodromal Huntington's Disease: A Review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papp, Kathryn V.; Kaplan, Richard F.; Snyder, Peter J.

    2011-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD), an autosomal-dominant genetic disorder, has historically been viewed as a degenerative movement disorder but it also includes psychiatric symptoms and progressive cognitive decline. There has been a lack of consensus in the literature about whether or not cognitive signs can be detected in carriers before clinical…

  2. Exploring Genetic Factors Involved in Huntington Disease Age of Onset

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Valcárcel-Ocete, Leire; Alkorta-Aranburu, Gorka; Iriondo, Mikel

    2015-01-01

    Age of onset (AO) of Huntington disease (HD) is mainly determined by the length of the CAG repeat expansion (CAGexp) in exon 1 of the HTT gene. Additional genetic variation has been suggested to contribute to AO, although the mechanism by which it could affect AO is presently unknown. The aim...

  3. Ideomotor limb apraxia in Huntington's disease: implications for corticostriate involvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamilton, J M; Haaland, K Y; Adair, J C; Brandt, J

    2003-01-01

    Ideomotor limb apraxia, a disorder of goal-directed movement, has been attributed to lesions in the frontal and parietal lobes, but the role of subcortical structures is less certain. In order to determine its prevalence in a disorder affecting the basal ganglia and corticostriatal connections, we examined imitation of hand gestures in Huntington's disease (HD) patients. We also assessed the relationship between apraxia and cognitive and motor dysfunction in an effort to better understand the neural underpinnings of apraxia in HD. If damage restricted to the basal ganglia produces ideomotor limb apraxia, then we would expect to find evidence of apraxia in patients who were early in the disease course when selective striatal damage is most common. Such a pattern, however, was not found in our sample. Instead, patients with greater neurological impairment and with a longer duration of disease were more likely than less affected patients to demonstrate apraxia. Apraxia was not related to severity of chorea, but was associated with greater impairment in eye movements, voluntary movements, and verbal fluency. These findings suggest that apraxia in HD results from damage to the corticostriate pathways and the basal ganglia rather than from damage restricted to the basal ganglia.

  4. Atypical Huntington's disease with the clinical presentation of behavioural variant of frontotemporal dementia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutovsky, Stanislav; Smolek, Tomas; Alafuzoff, Irina; Blaho, Andrej; Parrak, Vojtech; Turcani, Peter; Palkovic, Michal; Petrovic, Robert; Novak, Michal; Zilka, Norbert

    2016-12-01

    Huntington's disease is an incurable, adult-onset, autosomal dominant inherited disorder caused by an expanded trinucleotide repeat (CAG). In this study, we describe a Huntington's disease patient displaying clinical symptoms of the behavioural variant of frontotemporal dementia in the absence of tremor and ataxia. The clinical onset was at the age of 36 years and the disease progressed slowly (18 years). Genetic testing revealed expanded trinucleotide CAG repeats in the Huntingtin gene, together with a Glu318Gly polymorphism in presenilin 1. Neuropathological assessment revealed extensive amyloid β (Aβ) aggregates in all cortical regions. No inclusions displaying hyperphosphorylated tau or phosphorylated transactive response DNA-binding protein 43 (TDP43) were found. A high number of p62 (sequestosome 1) immunopositive intranuclear inclusions were seen mainly in the cortex, while subcortical areas were affected to a lesser extent. Confocal microscopy revealed that the majority of p62 intranuclear lesions co-localised with the fused-in-sarcoma protein (FUS) immunostaining. The morphology of the inclusions resembled intranuclear aggregates in Huntington's disease. The presented proband suffered from Huntington's disease showed atypical distribution of FUS positive intranuclear aggregates in the cortical areas with concomitant Alzheimer's disease pathology.

  5. A new measure for end of life planning, preparation, and preferences in Huntington disease: HDQLIFE end of life planning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlozzi, Noelle E; Hahn, E A; Frank, S A; Perlmutter, J S; Downing, N D; McCormack, M K; Barton, S; Nance, M A; Schilling, S G

    2018-01-01

    Huntington disease is a fatal inherited neurodegenerative disease. Because the end result of Huntington disease is death due to Huntington disease-related causes, there is a need for better understanding and caring for individuals at their end of life. The purpose of this study was to develop a new measure to evaluate end of life planning. We conducted qualitative focus groups, solicited expert input, and completed a literature review to develop a 16-item measure to evaluate important aspects of end of life planning for Huntington disease. Item response theory and differential item functioning analyses were utilized to examine the psychometric properties of items; exploratory factor analysis was used to establish meaningful subscales. Participants included 508 individuals with pre-manifest or manifest Huntington disease. Item response theory supported the retention of all 16 items on the huntington disease quality of life ("HDQLIFE") end of life planning measure. Exploratory factor analysis supported a four-factor structure: legal planning, financial planning, preferences for hospice care, and preferences for conditions (locations, surroundings, etc.) at the time of death. Although a handful of items exhibited some evidence of differential item functioning, these items were retained due to their relevant clinical content. The final 16-item scale includes an overall total score and four subscale scores that reflect the different end of life planning constructs. The 16-item HDQLIFE end of life planning measure demonstrates adequate psychometric properties; it may be a useful tool for clinicians to clarify patients' preferences about end of life care.

  6. Cortical myoclonus in childhood and juvenile onset Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossi Sebastiano, Davide; Soliveri, Paola; Panzica, Ferruccio; Moroni, Isabella; Gellera, Cinzia; Gilioli, Isabella; Nardocci, Nardo; Ciano, Claudia; Albanese, Alberto; Franceschetti, Silvana; Canafoglia, Laura

    2012-07-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) appearing before the age of 20 years gives rise to a distinct phenotype with respect to the classical adult-onset disease. Here we describe three patients with childhood or juvenile HD onset presenting with action myoclonus. We performed jerk-locked back-averaging (JLBA), EEG-EMG coherence and phase analysis, long-loop reflexes (LLRs) and somatosensory evoked potentials (SSEPs). In one patient, we also performed transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) using single and paired pulses. In all patients, the EMG features revealed movement activated quasi-rhythmic repetitive jerks; the JLBA and EEG-EMG spectral and coherence profiles indicated a cortical generator of the myoclonus. All patients had enhanced LLRs during muscle contraction, while none showed giant SSEPs. The evaluation of intracortical inhibition by means of TMS revealed reduced inhibition at short and long interstimulus intervals. The rhythmic course of the action myoclonus and the characteristics of the LLRs suggest that myoclonus is due to a reverberant circuit involving the motor cortex, possibly because of an imbalance between excitatory and inhibitory cortical neuronal systems. Our findings suggest a similar cortical dysfunction in childhood and juvenile onset HD, which probably results from a specific circuitry impairment. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. An Overview of Potential Targets for Treating Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis and Huntington's Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Paula, Caroline Zocatelli; Gonçalves, Bruno Daniel Correia; Vieira, Luciene Bruno

    2015-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases affect millions of people worldwide. Progressive damage or loss of neurons, neurodegeneration, has severe consequences on the mental and physical health of a patient. Despite all efforts by scientific community, there is currently no cure or manner to slow degeneration progression. We review some treatments that attempt to prevent the progress of some of major neurodegenerative diseases: Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis and Huntington's disease. PMID:26295035

  8. Huntington's disease: psychiatric issues of a paradigmatic neuropsychiatric disorder

    OpenAIRE

    Ribeiro, Raquel

    2006-01-01

    Huntington's Disease (HD) can be considered a paradigmatic neuropsychiatric disorder that has three components: motor, cognitive and behavioral symptoms. The author synthetizes research developed on epidemiology and etipathogeny of HD and makes reference to more usual symptoms, emphasizing psychiatric symptoms, often the first manifestation of HD. About a clinical case, the author points out rhe great phenotypic variability of this disease, reflects about ways to develop the knowledge of the ...

  9. Dysregulated brain creatine kinase is associated with hearing impairment in mouse models of Huntington disease

    OpenAIRE

    Lin, Yow-Sien; Chen, Chiung-Mei; Soong, Bing-Wen; Wu, Yih-Ru; Chen, Hui-Mei; Yeh, Wen-Ying; Wu, Dai-Rong; Lin, Yi-Jun; Poon, Paul Wai-Fung; Cheng, Mei-Ling; Wang, Chih-Hung; Chern, Yijuang

    2011-01-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is a degenerative disorder caused by expanded CAG repeats in exon 1 of the huntingtin gene (HTT). Patients with late-stage HD are known to have abnormal auditory processing, but the peripheral auditory functions of HD patients have yet to be thoroughly assessed. In this study, 19 HD patients (aged 40–59 years) were assessed for hearing impairment using pure-tone audiometry and assessment of auditory brainstem responses (ABRs). PTA thresholds were markedly elevated in H...

  10. Visual system integrity and cognition in early Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolf, Robert C; Sambataro, Fabio; Vasic, Nenad; Baldas, Eva-Maria; Ratheiser, Iris; Bernhard Landwehrmeyer, Georg; Depping, Malte S; Thomann, Philipp A; Sprengelmeyer, Reiner; Süssmuth, Sigurd D; Orth, Michael

    2014-07-01

    Posterior cortical volume changes and abnormal visuomotor performance are present in patients with Huntington's disease (HD). However, it is unclear whether posterior cortical volume loss contributes to abnormal neural activity, and whether activity changes predict cognitive dysfunction. Using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), we investigated brain structure and visual network activity at rest in patients with early HD (n = 20) and healthy controls (n = 20). The symbol digit modalities test (SDMT) and subtests of the Visual Object and Space Perception Battery were completed offline. For functional MRI data, a group independent component analysis was used. Voxel-based morphometry was employed to assess regional brain atrophy, and 'biological parametric mapping' analyses were included to investigate the impact of atrophy on neural activity. Patients showed significantly worse visuomotor and visual object performance than controls. Structural analyses confirmed occipitotemporal atrophy. In patients and controls, two spatiotemporally distinct visual systems were identified. Patients showed decreased activity in the left fusiform cortex, and increased left cerebellar activity. These findings remained stable after correction for brain atrophy. Lower fusiform cortex activity was associated with lower SDMT performance and with higher disease burden scores. These associations were absent when cerebellar function was related to task performance and disease burden. The results of this study suggest that regionally specific functional abnormalities of the visual system can account for the worse visuomotor cognition in HD patients. However, occipital volume changes cannot sufficiently explain abnormal neural function in these patients. © 2014 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  11. Huntington Disease - principles and practice of nutritional management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zukiewicz-Sobczak, Wioletta; Król, Renata; Wróblewska, Paula; Piątek, Jacek; Gibas-Dorna, Magdalena

    2014-01-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is a degenerative brain disease clinically manifested by the characteristic triad: physical symptoms including involuntary movements and poor coordination, cognitive changes with less ability to organize routine tasks, and some emotional and behavioral disturbances. For patients with HD, feeding is one of the problems they have to face. People with HD often have lower than average body weight and struggle with malnutrition. As a part of therapy, good nutrition is an intervention maintaining health and functional ability for maximally prolonged time. In the early stages of HD, small amounts of blenderized foods given orally are recommended. In more advanced stages, enteral nutrition is essential using gastric, or jejunal tubes for short term. Most severe cases require gastrostomy or gastrojejunostomy. Although enteral feeding is well tolerated by most of the patients, a number of complications may occur, including damage to the nose, pharynx, or esophagus, aspiration pneumonia, sinusitis, metabolic imbalances due to improper nutrient and fluid supply, adverse effects affecting gastrointestinal system, and refeeding syndrome. Copyright © 2014 Polish Neurological Society. Published by Elsevier Urban & Partner Sp. z o.o. All rights reserved.

  12. Huntington disease : Dna analysis in brazilian population

    OpenAIRE

    Raskin, Salmo; Jardim, Laura Bannach

    2000-01-01

    A doença de Huntington (DH) está associada a expansões da seqüência repetitiva de trinucleotídeos CAG no gene HD. Através de análise do número de repetições CAG em indivíduos brasileiros, amostras de 92 indivíduos-controle não afetados pela DH, 44 pacientes com DH e 40 indivíduos de 6 famílias com a DH, demonstrou-se a presença de repetições de 7 até 33 trinucleotídeos CAG nos indivíduos-controle e de 39 até 88 nos alelos mutados dos indivíduos afetados. Foi constatada relação inversa entre a...

  13. Social cognition in Huntington's disease: A meta-analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bora, Emre; Velakoulis, Dennis; Walterfang, Mark

    2016-01-15

    Neurocognitive impairment in Huntington's disease (HD) frequently includes deficits in emotion recognition, and recent studies have also provided evidence for deficits in theory of mind (ToM). There have been conflicting reports regarding the extent of emotion recognition and ToM deficits before the onset of motor symptoms in HD. In this meta-analysis, ToM and emotion recognition performances of 2226HD or pre-manifest HD and 998 healthy controls were included in the meta-analysis. Meta-regression analyses were conducted to investigate the relationship between social cognition deficits and demographic, cognitive and clinical features in HD. HD patients were significantly less accurate than controls in ToM and across all emotions in response to both facial and vocal stimuli. ToM (d=1.72) and recognition of negative emotions (d=1.20-1.33), especially anger, disgust and fear (d=1.26-1.52) were severely impaired. Pre-manifest HD was also associated with impairment in social cognition. The severity of emotion recognition impairment was significantly associated with disease burden, proximity of onset of motor symptoms and cognitive impairment. Social cognition impairments are potential biomarkers of disease onset and progression in HD. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Remifentanil in a patient with Huntington's chorea - case report ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Relatively few published case reports related to the anaesthetic management of Huntington's chorea (HC) exist. At the time of surgery no publications were found related to remifentanil's use in patients with HC. This case report describes the management of a confirmed HC patient requiring urgent decompression of a spinal ...

  15. Social cognition in frontotemporal dementia and Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snowden, J S; Gibbons, Z C; Blackshaw, A; Doubleday, E; Thompson, J; Craufurd, D; Foster, J; Happé, F; Neary, D

    2003-01-01

    Frontotemporal dementia (FTD) and Huntington's disease (HD) are degenerative disorders, with predominant involvement, respectively of frontal neocortex and striatum. Both conditions give rise to altered social conduct and breakdown in interpersonal relationships, although the factors underlying these changes remain poorly defined. The study used tests of theory of mind (interpretation of cartoons and stories and judgement of preference based on eye gaze) to explore the ability of patients with FTD and HD to interpret social situations and ascribe mental states to others. Performance in the FTD group was severely impaired on all tasks, regardless of whether the test condition required attribution of a mental state. The HD group showed a milder impairment in cartoon and story interpretation, and normal preference judgements. Qualitative differences in performance were demonstrated between groups. FTD patients made more concrete, literal interpretations, whereas HD patients were more likely to misconstrue situations. The findings are interpreted as demonstrating impaired theory of mind in FTD, as one component of widespread executive deficits. In HD the evidence does not suggest a fundamental loss of theory of mind, but rather a tendency to draw faulty inferences from social situations. It is concluded that social breakdown in FTD and HD may have a different underlying basis and that the frontal neocortex and striatum have distinct contributions to social behaviour.

  16. Palliative Care in Huntington Disease: Personal Reflections and a Review of the Literature

    OpenAIRE

    Tarolli, Christopher G.; Chesire, Amy M.; Biglan, Kevin M

    2017-01-01

    Background Huntington disease is a fatal, autosomal dominant, neurodegenerative disorder manifest by the triad of a movement disorder, behavioral disturbances, and dementia. At present, no curative or disease modifying therapies exist for the condition and current treatments are symptomatic. Palliative care is an approach to care that focuses on symptom relief, patient and caregiver support, and end of life care. There is increasing evidence of the benefit of palliative care throughout the co...

  17. Factor analysis of the hospital anxiety and depression scale among a Huntington's disease population

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dale, Maria; Maltby, John; Martucci, Rossana

    2015-01-01

    INTRODUCTION: Depression and anxiety are common in Huntington's disease, a genetic neurodegenerative disorder. There is a need for measurement tools of mood to be validated within a Huntington's disease population. The current study aimed to analyze the factor structure of the Hospital Anxiety...... and Depression Scale in Huntington's disease. METHODS: Data from the European Huntington's Disease Network study REGISTRY 3 were used to undertake a factor analysis of the scale among a sample of 492 Huntington's disease mutation carriers. The sample was randomly divided into two equal subsamples...... support for an eight-item version of the scale to be used as a measure of general distress within Huntington's disease populations. © 2015 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society....

  18. Informativeness of Early Huntington Disease Signs about Gene Status.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oster, Emily; Eberly, Shirley W; Dorsey, E Ray; Kayson-Rubin, Elise; Oakes, David; Shoulson, Ira

    2015-01-01

    The cohort-level risk of Huntington disease (HD) is related to the age and symptom level of the cohort, but this relationship has not been made precise. To predict the evolving likelihood of carrying the Huntington disease (HD) gene for at-risk adults using age and sign level. Using data from adults with early signs and symptoms of HD linked to information on genetic status, we use Bayes' theorem to calculate the probability that an undiagnosed individual of a certain age and sign level has an expanded CAG repeat. Both age and sign levels have substantial influence on the likelihood of HD onset, and the probability of eventual diagnosis changes as those at risk age and exhibit (or fail to exhibit) symptoms. For example, our data suggest that in a cohort of individuals age 26 with a Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS) motor score of 7-10 70% of them will carry the HD mutation. For individuals age 56, the same motor score suggests only a 40% chance of carrying the mutation. Early motor signs of HD, overall and the chorea subscore, were highly predictive of disease onset at any age. However, body mass index (BMI) and cognitive performance scores were not as highly predictive. These results suggest that if researchers or clinicians are looking for early clues of HD, it may be more foretelling to look at motor rather than cognitive signs. Application of similar approaches could be used with other adult-onset genetic conditions.

  19. Challenges of Huntington's disease and quest for therapeutic biomarkers

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kotrčová, Eva; Jarkovská, Karla; Valeková, Ivona; Žižková, Martina; Motlík, Jan; Gadher, S. J.; Kovářová, Hana

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 9, 1-2 (2015), s. 147-158 ISSN 1862-8346 R&D Projects: GA MŠk ED2.1.00/03.0124; GA TA ČR(CZ) TA01011466 Institutional support: RVO:67985904 Keywords : HD biomarkers * Huntington´s disease * Huntingtin neurotoxicity * Huntingtin pathogenesis Subject RIV: FH - Neurology Impact factor: 2.959, year: 2015

  20. Controlled clinical trial of cannabidiol in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Consroe, P; Laguna, J; Allender, J; Snider, S; Stern, L; Sandyk, R; Kennedy, K; Schram, K

    1991-11-01

    Based on encouraging preliminary findings, cannabidiol (CBD), a major nonpsychotropic constituent of Cannabis, was evaluated for symptomatic efficacy and safety in 15 neuroleptic-free patients with Huntington's Disease (HD). The effects of oral CBD (10 mg/kg/day for 6 weeks) and placebo (sesame oil for 6 weeks) were ascertained weekly under a double-blind, randomized cross-over design. A comparison of the effects of CBD and placebo on chorea severity and other therapeutic outcome variables, and on a Cannabis side effect inventory, clinical lab tests and other safety outcome variables, indicated no significant (p greater than 0.05) or clinically important differences. Correspondingly, plasma levels of CBD were assayed by GC/MS, and the weekly levels (mean range of 5.9 to 11.2 ng/ml) did not differ significantly over the 6 weeks of CBD administration. In summary, CBD, at an average daily dose of about 700 mg/day for 6 weeks, was neither symptomatically effective nor toxic, relative to placebo, in neuroleptic-free patients with HD.

  1. Targeting the Cholinergic System to Develop a Novel Therapy for Huntington's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Souza, Gary X; Waldvogel, Henry J

    2016-12-15

    In this review, we outline the role of the cholinergic system in Huntington's disease, and briefly describe the dysfunction of cholinergic transmission, cholinergic neurons, cholinergic receptors and cholinergic survival factors observed in post-mortem human brains and animal models of Huntington's disease. We postulate how the dysfunctional cholinergic system can be targeted to develop novel therapies for Huntington's disease, and discuss the beneficial effects of cholinergic therapies in pre-clinical and clinical studies.

  2. Tetrabenazine Versus Deutetrabenazine for Huntington's Disease: Twins or Distant Cousins?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodrigues, Filipe B; Duarte, Gonçalo S; Costa, João; Ferreira, Joaquim J; Wild, Edward J

    2017-01-01

    Tetrabenazine is the only US Food and Drug Administration-approved drug for Huntington's disease, and deutetrabenazine was recently tested against placebo. A switching-trial from tetrabenazine to deutetrabenazine is underway, but no head-to-head, blinded, randomized controlled trial is planned. Using meta-analytical methodology, the authors compared these molecules. RCTs comparing tetrabenazine or deutetrabenazine with placebo in Huntington's disease were searched. The authors assessed the Cochrane risk-of-bias tool, calculated indirect treatment comparisons, and applied the Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development, and Evaluation (GRADE) framework. The evidence network for this report comprised 1 tetrabenazine trial and 1 deutetrabenazine trial, both against placebo. Risk of bias was moderate in both. Participants in the tetrabenazine and deutetrabenazine trials did not differ significantly on motor scores or adverse events. Depression and somnolence scales significantly favored deutetrabenazine. There is low-quality evidence that tetrabenazine and deutetrabenazine do not differ in efficacy or safety. It is important to note that these results are likely to remain the only head-to-head comparison between these 2 compounds in Huntington's disease.

  3. How to Capitalize on the Retest Effect in Future Trials on Huntington's Disease.

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    Catherine Schramm

    Full Text Available The retest effect-improvement of performance on second exposure to a task-may impede the detection of cognitive decline in clinical trials for neurodegenerative diseases. We assessed the impact of the retest effect in Huntington's disease trials, and investigated its possible neutralization. We enrolled 54 patients in the Multicentric Intracerebral Grafting in Huntington's Disease (MIG-HD trial and 39 in the placebo arm of the Riluzole trial in Huntington's Disease (RIL-HD. All were assessed with the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS plus additional cognitive tasks at baseline (A1, shortly after baseline (A2 and one year later (A3. We used paired t-tests to analyze the retest effect between A1 and A2. For each task of the MIG-HD study, we used a stepwise algorithm to design models predictive of patient performance at A3, which we applied to the RIL-HD trial for external validation. We observed a retest effect in most cognitive tasks. A decline in performance at one year was detected in 3 of the 15 cognitive tasks with A1 as the baseline, and 9 of the 15 cognitive tasks with A2 as the baseline. We also included the retest effect in performance modeling and showed that it facilitated performance prediction one year later for 14 of the 15 cognitive tasks. The retest effect may mask cognitive decline in patients with neurodegenerative diseases. The dual baseline can improve clinical trial design, and better prediction should homogenize patient groups, resulting in smaller numbers of participants being required.

  4. How to Capitalize on the Retest Effect in Future Trials on Huntington's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schramm, Catherine; Katsahian, Sandrine; Youssov, Katia; Démonet, Jean-François; Krystkowiak, Pierre; Supiot, Frédéric; Verny, Christophe; Cleret de Langavant, Laurent; Bachoud-Lévi, Anne-Catherine

    2015-01-01

    The retest effect-improvement of performance on second exposure to a task-may impede the detection of cognitive decline in clinical trials for neurodegenerative diseases. We assessed the impact of the retest effect in Huntington's disease trials, and investigated its possible neutralization. We enrolled 54 patients in the Multicentric Intracerebral Grafting in Huntington's Disease (MIG-HD) trial and 39 in the placebo arm of the Riluzole trial in Huntington's Disease (RIL-HD). All were assessed with the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS) plus additional cognitive tasks at baseline (A1), shortly after baseline (A2) and one year later (A3). We used paired t-tests to analyze the retest effect between A1 and A2. For each task of the MIG-HD study, we used a stepwise algorithm to design models predictive of patient performance at A3, which we applied to the RIL-HD trial for external validation. We observed a retest effect in most cognitive tasks. A decline in performance at one year was detected in 3 of the 15 cognitive tasks with A1 as the baseline, and 9 of the 15 cognitive tasks with A2 as the baseline. We also included the retest effect in performance modeling and showed that it facilitated performance prediction one year later for 14 of the 15 cognitive tasks. The retest effect may mask cognitive decline in patients with neurodegenerative diseases. The dual baseline can improve clinical trial design, and better prediction should homogenize patient groups, resulting in smaller numbers of participants being required.

  5. Magnetization transfer MRI in dementia disorders, Huntington's disease and parkinsonism.

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    Tambasco, Nicola; Nigro, Pasquale; Romoli, Michele; Simoni, Simone; Parnetti, Lucilla; Calabresi, Paolo

    2015-01-01

    Magnetic resonance imaging is the most used technique of neuroimaging. Using recent advances in magnetic resonance application it is possible to investigate several changes in neurodegenerative disease. Among different techniques, magnetization-transfer imaging (MTI), a magnetic resonance acquisition protocol assessing the magnetization exchange between protons bound to water and those bound to macromolecules, is able to identify microstructural brain tissue changes peculiar of neurodegenerative diseases. This review provides a report on the MTI technique and its use in the dementia disorders, Huntington's disease and parkinsonisms, comprehensive of the predictive values of MTI in the identification of early-phase disease. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Making a measurable difference in advanced Huntington disease care.

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    Moskowitz, Carol Brown; Rao, Ashwini K

    2017-01-01

    Neurologists' role in the care of people with advanced Huntington disease (HD) (total functional capacity <7), often limited by a lack of clinical research to support good practice, includes the following: (1) provide comprehensive health records to an interdisciplinary care staff before admission to a more intense care setting (home health services, day program, assisted living, group home, long-term skilled nursing facility, palliative care); (2) consult with and refer to rehabilitation (occupational therapy, physical therapy, speech and language pathology), behavioral and psychiatric professionals for problem-solving strategies, which must be reviewed with direct care staff before implementation; (3) encourage and support qualitative and quantitative interdisciplinary research studies, and randomized controlled studies of nonpharmacologic interventions; and (4) assist in the development of meaningful measures to further document what works to provide a good quality of life for the patient and family and a comfortable thoughtful approach to a good death. Collaborative models of care depend on: (1) clear communication; (2) ongoing education and support programs; with (3) pharmacologic and rehabilitation interventions, always in the context of respect for the person with HD, a preservation of the individuals' dignity, autonomy, and individual preferences. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Polysomnographic Findings and Clinical Correlates in Huntington Disease: A Cross-Sectional Cohort Study

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    Piano, Carla; Losurdo, Anna; Della Marca, Giacomo; Solito, Marcella; Calandra-Buonaura, Giovanna; Provini, Federica; Bentivoglio, Anna Rita; Cortelli, Pietro

    2015-01-01

    Study Objectives: To evaluate the sleep pattern and the motor activity during sleep in a cohort of patients affected by Huntington disease (HD). Design: Cross-sectional cohort study. Setting: Sleep laboratory. Patients: Thirty HD patients, 16 women and 14 men (mean age 57.3 ± 12.2 y); 30 matched healthy controls (mean age 56.5 ± 11.8 y). Interventions: Subjective sleep evaluation: Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS); Berlin's Questionnaire, interview for restless legs syndrome (RLS), questionnaire for REM sleep behavior disorder (RBD). Clinical evaluation: disease duration, clinical severity (unified Huntington disease motor rating scale [UHDMRS]), genetic tests. Laboratory-based full-night attended video-polysomnography (V-PSG). Measurements and Results: The duration of the disease was 9.4 ± 4.4 y, UHMDRS score was 55.5 ± 23.4, CAG repeats were 44.3 ± 4.1. Body mass index was 21.9 ± 4.0 kg/m2. No patients or caregivers reported poor sleep quality. Two patients reported symptoms of RLS. Eight patients had an ESS score ≥ 9. Eight patients had high risk of obstructive sleep apnea. At the RBD questionnaire, two patients had a pathological score. HD patients, compared to controls, showed shorter sleep, reduced sleep efficiency index, and increased arousals and awakenings. Four patients presented with sleep disordered breathing (SDB). Periodic limb movements (PLMs) during wake and sleep were observed in all patients. No episode of RBD was observed in the V-PSG recordings, and no patients showed rapid eye movement (REM) sleep without atonia. The disease duration correlated with ESS score (P Marca G, Solito M, Calandra-Buonaura G, Provini F, Bentivoglio AR, Cortelli P. Polysomnographic findings and clinical correlates in Huntington disease: a cross-sectional cohort study. SLEEP 2015;38(9):1489–1495. PMID:25845698

  8. Palliative Care in Huntington Disease: Personal Reflections and a Review of the Literature.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tarolli, Christopher G; Chesire, Amy M; Biglan, Kevin M

    2017-01-01

    Huntington disease is a fatal, autosomal dominant, neurodegenerative disorder manifest by the triad of a movement disorder, behavioral disturbances, and dementia. At present, no curative or disease modifying therapies exist for the condition and current treatments are symptomatic. Palliative care is an approach to care that focuses on symptom relief, patient and caregiver support, and end of life care. There is increasing evidence of the benefit of palliative care throughout the course of neurodegenerative conditions including Parkinson disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. However, beyond its application at the end of life, little is known about the role of palliative care in Huntington disease. In this article, we discuss what is known about palliative care in Huntington disease, specifically related to early disease burden, caregiver burnout, advance care planning, and end of life care. We provide a review of the current literature and discuss our own care practices. We conclude by discussing questions that remain unanswered and positing ideas for future work in the field.

  9. Palliative Care in Huntington Disease: Personal Reflections and a Review of the Literature

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tarolli, Christopher G.; Chesire, Amy M.; Biglan, Kevin M.

    2017-01-01

    Background Huntington disease is a fatal, autosomal dominant, neurodegenerative disorder manifest by the triad of a movement disorder, behavioral disturbances, and dementia. At present, no curative or disease modifying therapies exist for the condition and current treatments are symptomatic. Palliative care is an approach to care that focuses on symptom relief, patient and caregiver support, and end of life care. There is increasing evidence of the benefit of palliative care throughout the course of neurodegenerative conditions including Parkinson disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. However, beyond its application at the end of life, little is known about the role of palliative care in Huntington disease. Methods In this article, we discuss what is known about palliative care in Huntington disease, specifically related to early disease burden, caregiver burnout, advance care planning, and end of life care. Results We provide a review of the current literature and discuss our own care practices. Discussion We conclude by discussing questions that remain unanswered and positing ideas for future work in the field. PMID:28428907

  10. Palliative Care in Huntington Disease: Personal Reflections and a Review of the Literature

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher G. Tarolli

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Background Huntington disease is a fatal, autosomal dominant, neurodegenerative disorder manifest by the triad of a movement disorder, behavioral disturbances, and dementia. At present, no curative or disease modifying therapies exist for the condition and current treatments are symptomatic. Palliative care is an approach to care that focuses on symptom relief, patient and caregiver support, and end of life care. There is increasing evidence of the benefit of palliative care throughout the course of neurodegenerative conditions including Parkinson disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. However, beyond its application at the end of life, little is known about the role of palliative care in Huntington disease.Methods In this article, we discuss what is known about palliative care in Huntington disease, specifically related to early disease burden, caregiver burnout, advance care planning, and end of life care.Results We provide a review of the current literature and discuss our own care practices.Discussion We conclude by discussing questions that remain unanswered and positing ideas for future work in the field.

  11. The structural involvement of the cingulate cortex in premanifest and early Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hobbs, Nicola Z; Pedrick, Amy V; Say, Miranda J; Frost, Chris; Dar Santos, Rachelle; Coleman, Allison; Sturrock, Aaron; Craufurd, David; Stout, Julie C; Leavitt, Blair R; Barnes, Josephine; Tabrizi, Sarah J; Scahill, Rachael I

    2011-08-01

    The impact of Huntington's disease neuropathology on the structure of the cingulate is uncertain, with evidence of both cortical enlargement and atrophy in this structure in early clinical disease. We sought to determine differences in cingulate volume between premanifest Huntington's disease and early Huntington's disease groups compared with controls using detailed manual measurements. Thirty controls, 30 subjects with premanifest Huntington's disease, and 30 subjects with early Huntington's disease were selected from the Vancouver site of the TRACK-HD study. Subjects underwent 3 Tesla magnetic resonance imaging and motor, cognitive, and neuropsychiatric assessment. The cingulate was manually delineated and subdivided into rostral, caudal, and posterior segments. Group differences in volume and associations with performance on 4 tasks thought to utilize cingulate function were examined, with adjustment for appropriate covariates. Cingulate volumes were, on average, 1.7 mL smaller in early Huntington's disease (P=.001) and 0.9 mL smaller in premanifest Huntington's disease (P=.1) compared with controls. Smaller volumes in subsections of the cingulate were associated with impaired recognition of negative emotions (P=.04), heightened depression (P=.009), and worse visual working memory performance (P=.01). There was no evidence of associations between volume and ability on a performance-monitoring task. This study disputes previous findings of enlargement of the cingulate cortex in Huntington's disease and instead suggests that the cingulate undergoes structural degeneration during early Huntington's disease with directionally consistent, nonsignificant differences seen in premanifest Huntington's disease. Cingulate atrophy may contribute to deficits in mood, emotional processing, and visual working memory in Huntington's disease. Copyright © 2011 Movement Disorder Society.

  12. Physical Therapy and Exercise Interventions in Huntington's Disease: A Mixed Methods Systematic Review.

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    Fritz, Nora E; Rao, Ashwini K; Kegelmeyer, Deb; Kloos, Anne; Busse, Monica; Hartel, Lynda; Carrier, Judith; Quinn, Lori

    2017-01-01

    A number of studies evaluating physical therapy and exercise interventions in Huntington's disease have been conducted over the past 15 years. However, an assessment of the quality and strength of the evidence in support of these interventions is lacking. The purpose of this systematic review was to investigate the effectiveness of physical therapy and exercise interventions in people with Huntington's disease, and to examine the perceptions of patients, families and caregivers of these interventions. This mixed-methods systematic review utilized the Joanna Briggs Institute (JBI) approach and extraction tools to evaluate the literature from January 2003 until May 2016. The review considered interventions that included exercise and physical therapy interventions, and included both quantitative and qualitative outcome measures. Twenty (20) studies met the inclusion criteria, including eighteen (18) that had quantitative outcome measures and two (2) that utilized qualitative methods. JBI Levels of evidence for the 18 quantitative studies were as follows: Eight studies were at evidence Level 1, seven were at Level 2, two were at Level 3, and one was at Level 4. Our review suggests that there is preliminary support for the benefits of exercise and physical activity in Huntington's disease in terms of motor function, gait speed, and balance, as well as a range of physical and social benefits identified through patient-reported outcomes. Variability in mode of intervention as well as outcome measures limits the interpretability of these studies, and high-quality studies that incorporate adaptive trial designs for this rare disease are needed.

  13. Iron accumulates in Huntington's disease neurons: protection by deferoxamine.

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    Jianfang Chen

    Full Text Available Huntington's disease (HD is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder caused by a polyglutamine-encoding CAG expansion in the huntingtin gene. Iron accumulates in the brains of HD patients and mouse disease models. However, the cellular and subcellular sites of iron accumulation, as well as significance to disease progression are not well understood. We used independent approaches to investigate the location of brain iron accumulation. In R6/2 HD mouse brain, synchotron x-ray fluorescence analysis revealed iron accumulation as discrete puncta in the perinuclear cytoplasm of striatal neurons. Further, perfusion Turnbull's staining for ferrous iron (II combined with transmission electron microscope ultra-structural analysis revealed increased staining in membrane bound peri-nuclear vesicles in R6/2 HD striatal neurons. Analysis of iron homeostatic proteins in R6/2 HD mice revealed decreased levels of the iron response proteins (IRPs 1 and 2 and accordingly decreased expression of iron uptake transferrin receptor (TfR and increased levels of neuronal iron export protein ferroportin (FPN. Finally, we show that intra-ventricular delivery of the iron chelator deferoxamine results in an improvement of the motor phenotype in R6/2 HD mice. Our data supports accumulation of redox-active ferrous iron in the endocytic / lysosomal compartment in mouse HD neurons. Expression changes of IRPs, TfR and FPN are consistent with a compensatory response to an increased intra-neuronal labile iron pool leading to increased susceptibility to iron-associated oxidative stress. These findings, together with protection by deferoxamine, support a potentiating role of neuronal iron accumulation in HD.

  14. Huntington's disease: psychiatric issues of a paradigmatic neuropsychiatric disorder

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    Raquel Ribeiro

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Huntington's Disease (HD can be considered a paradigmatic neuropsychiatric disorder that has three components: motor, cognitive and behavioral symptoms. The author synthetizes research developed on epidemiology and etipathogeny of HD and makes reference to more usual symptoms, emphasizing psychiatric symptoms, often the first manifestation of HD. About a clinical case, the author points out rhe great phenotypic variability of this disease, reflects about ways to develop the knowledge of the neuropsychiatric manifestations in order to achieve new treatment strategies in this area, finallt, ameliorate the comprehension of cerebral function.

  15. Cannabinoids: novel medicines for the treatment of Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sagredo, Onintza; Pazos, M Ruth; Valdeolivas, Sara; Fernandez-Ruiz, Javier

    2012-04-01

    Cannabinoid pharmacology has experienced a notable increase in the last 3 decades which is allowing the development of novel cannabinoid-based medicines for the treatment of different human pathologies, for example, Cesamet® (nabilone) or Marinol® (synthetic Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol for oral administration) that were approved in 80s for the treatment of nausea and vomiting associated with chemotherapy treatment in cancer patients and in 90s for anorexiacachexia associated with AIDS therapy. Recently, the british company GW Pharmaceuticals plc has developed an oromucosal spray called Sativex®, which is constituted by an equimolecular combination of Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol- and cannabidiol- enriched botanical extracts. Sativex® has been approved for the treatment of specific symptoms (i.e. spasticity and pain) of multiple sclerosis patients in various countries (i.e. Canada, UK, Spain, New Zealand). However, this cannabis- based medicine has been also proposed to be useful in other neurological disorders given the analgesic, antitumoral, anti-inflammatory, and neuroprotective properties of their components demonstrated in preclinical models. Numerous clinical trials are presently being conducted to confirm this potential in patients. We are particularly interested in the case of Huntington's disease (HD), an autosomal-dominant inherited disorder caused by an excess of CAG repeats in the genomic allele resulting in a polyQ expansion in the encoded protein called huntingtin, and that affects primarily striatal and cortical neurons thus producing motor abnormalities (i.e. chorea) and dementia. Cannabinoids have been studied for alleviation of hyperkinetic symptoms, given their inhibitory effects on movement, and, in particular, as disease-modifying agents due to their anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective and neuroregenerative properties. This potential has been corroborated in different experimental models of HD and using different types of cannabinoid agonists

  16. Objective acoustic quantification of phonatory dysfunction in Huntington's disease.

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    Jan Rusz

    Full Text Available PURPOSE: Although speech motor changes are reported as a common sign of Huntington's disease (HD, the most prominent signs of voice dysfunction remain unknown. The aim of the current study was to explore specific changes in phonatory function in subjects with HD. METHOD: 34 subjects with HD and 34 age- and sex-matched healthy controls were examined. Participants performed sustained vowel phonation for subsequent analyses of airflow insufficiency, aperiodicity, irregular vibrations of vocal folds, signal perturbations, increased noise, and articulation deficiency. In total, 272 phonations were collected and 12 voice parameters were extracted. Subsequently, a predictive model was built to find the most salient patterns of voice disorders in HD. The results were also correlated with disease severity according to the Unified HD Rating Scale (UHDRS motor score. RESULTS: Subjects with HD showed deterioration in all investigated phonatory functions. Irregular pitch fluctuations, sudden phonation interruption, increased noise, and misplacement of articulators were found to be most significant patterns of phonatory dysfunction in HD (p<0.001. The combination of these four dysphonia aspects contributed to the best classification performance of 94.1% (sensitivity: 95.1%; specificity: 93.2% in the separation of HD patients from healthy participants. Our results further indicated stronger associations between sudden phonation interruption and voluntary components of the UHDRS (r = -0.48, p<0.01 and between misplacement of articulators and involuntary components of the UHDRS (r = 0.52, p<0.01. CONCLUSIONS: Our configuration of phonatory features can detect subtle voice abnormalities in subjects with HD. As impairment of phonatory function in HD was found to parallel increasing motor involvement, a qualitative description of voice dysfunction may be helpful to gain better insight into the pathophysiology of the vocal mechanism.

  17. Visual object and visuospatial cognition in Huntington's disease: implications for information processing in corticostriatal circuits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawrence, A D; Watkins, L H; Sahakian, B J; Hodges, J R; Robbins, T W

    2000-07-01

    The primate visual system contains two major streams of visual information processing. The ventral stream is directed into the inferior temporal cortex and is concerned with visual object cognition, whereas the dorsal stream is directed into the posterior parietal cortex and is concerned with visuospatial cognition. Both of these processing streams send projections to the basal ganglia, and the ventral stream may also receive reciprocal connections from the basal ganglia. Although a role for the basal ganglia in visual object and visuospatial cognition has been suggested, little work has been carried out in this area in humans. The primary site of neuropathology in Huntington's disease is the basal ganglia, and hence Huntington's disease provides an important model for the role of the human basal ganglia in visual object and visuospatial cognition, and its breakdown in disease. We examined performance on a wide battery of tests of both visual object and visuospatial recognition memory, working memory, attention, associative learning and perception, enabling us to specify more fully the role of the basal ganglia in visual object and visuospatial cognition, and the disruption of these processes in Huntington's disease. Huntington's disease patients exhibited deficits on tests of pattern and spatial recognition memory; showed impaired simultaneous matching and delay-independent delayed matching-to-sample deficits; showed spared accuracy but impaired reaction times in visual search; were impaired in spatial but not visual object working memory; and showed impaired pattern-location associative learning. The results of our investigations suggest a particular role for the striatum in context-dependent action selection, in line with current computational theories of basal ganglia function.

  18. Tracking motor impairments in the progression of Huntington's disease.

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    Long, Jeffery D; Paulsen, Jane S; Marder, Karen; Zhang, Ying; Kim, Ji-In; Mills, James A

    2014-03-01

    The Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale is used to characterize motor impairments and establish motor diagnosis. Little is known about the timing of diagnostic confidence level categories and the trajectory of motor impairments during the prodromal phase. Goals of this study were to estimate the timing of categories, model the prodromal trajectory of motor impairments, estimate the rate of motor impairment change by category, and provide required sample size estimates for a test of efficacy in clinical trials. In total, 1010 gene-expanded participants from the Neurobiological Predictors of Huntington's Disease (PREDICT-HD) trial were analyzed. Accelerated failure time models were used to predict the timing of categories. Linear mixed effects regression was used to model the longitudinal motor trajectories. Age and length of gene expansion were incorporated into all models. The timing of categories varied significantly by gene expansion, with faster progression associated with greater expansion. For the median expansion, the third diagnostic confidence level category was estimated to have a first occurrence 1.5 years before diagnosis, and the second and first categories were estimated to occur 6.75 years and 19.75 years before diagnosis, respectively. Motor impairments displayed a nonlinear prodromal course. The motor impairment rate of change increased as the diagnostic confidence level increased, with added acceleration for higher progression scores. Motor items can detect changes in motor impairments before diagnosis. Given a sufficiently high progression score, there is evidence that the diagnostic confidence level can be used for prodromal staging. Implications for Huntington's disease research and the planning of clinical trials of efficacy are discussed. © 2013 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society.

  19. The Cambridge MRI database for animal models of Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sawiak, Stephen J; Morton, A Jennifer

    2016-01-01

    We describe the Cambridge animal brain magnetic resonance imaging repository comprising 400 datasets to date from mouse models of Huntington disease. The data include raw images as well as segmented grey and white matter images with maps of cortical thickness. All images and phenotypic data for each subject are freely-available without restriction from (http://www.dspace.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/243361/). Software and anatomical population templates optimised for animal brain analysis with MRI are also available from this site. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  20. Huntington's disease : functional and structural biomarkers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dumas, Eve Marie

    2012-01-01

    The aims of this thesis were to gain insight into specific disease processes in Huntington’s Disease (HD) and to identify biomarkers. To achieve these aims, cognitive functioning, structural brain characteristics and intrinstic functional brain connectivity of premanifest and early HD subjects were

  1. Functional MRI signal fluctuations highlight altered resting brain activity in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarappa, Chiara; Salvatore, Elena; Filla, Alessandro; Cocozza, Sirio; Russo, Cinzia Valeria; Saccà, Francesco; Brunetti, Arturo; De Michele, Giuseppe; Quarantelli, Mario

    2017-10-01

    The fractional Amplitude of Low Frequency Fluctuations (fALFF) and the degree of local synchronization (Regional Homogeneity - ReHo) of resting-state BOLD signal have been suggested to map spontaneous neuronal activity and local functional connectivity, respectively. We compared voxelwise, independent of atrophy, the fALFF and ReHo patterns of 11 presymptomatic (ps-HD) and 28 symptomatic (sHD) Huntington's disease mutation carriers, with those of 40 normal volunteers, and tested their possible correlations with the motor and cognitive subscores of the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale. In sHD patients, fALFF was mainly reduced bilaterally in parietal lobes (right precuneus being already affected in psHD), and in superior frontal gyri, and increased bilaterally in cerebellar lobules VI, VIII and IX, as well as in the right inferior temporal gyrus. In sHD, and to a lesser extent in psHD, ReHo was bilaterally reduced in putamina, cerebellar lobules III to VI, and superior medial frontal gyri, and increased in both psHD and sHD in fronto-basal cortices, and in the right temporal lobe. fALFF correlated inversely with cognitive scores in lobule IX of the cerebellum (mainly with total Stroop score, p Huntington's Disease, and with reduced local functional integration in subcortical and cerebellar components of the sensori-motor network. Cerebellar clusters of significant correlation of fALFF with executive function scores may be related to compensatory mechanisms.

  2. New measures to capture end of life concerns in Huntington disease: Meaning and Purpose and Concern with Death and Dying from HDQLIFE (a patient reported outcomes measurement system)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlozzi, N.E.; Downing, N.R.; McCormack, M.K.; Schilling, S.G.; Perlmutter, J.S.; Hahn, E. A.; Lai, J.-S.; Frank, S.; Quaid, K.A.; Paulsen, J. S.; Cella, D.; Goodnight, S.M.; Miner, J.A.; Nance, M.A.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose Huntington disease (HD) is an incurable terminal disease. Thus, end of life (EOL) concerns are common in these individuals. A quantitative measure of EOL concerns in HD would enable a better understanding of how these concerns impact health-related quality of life. Therefore, we developed new measures of EOL for use in HD. Methods An EOL item pool of 45 items was field tested in 507 individuals with prodromal or manifest HD. Exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses (EFA and CFA, respectively) were conducted to establish unidimensional item pools. Item response theory (IRT) and differential item functioning analyses were applied to the identified unidimensional item pools to select the final items. Results EFA and CFA supported two separate unidimensional sets of items: Concern with Death and Dying (16 items), and Meaning and Purpose (14 items). IRT and DIF supported the retention of 12 Concern with Death and Dying items and 4 Meaning and Purpose items. IRT data supported the development of both a computer adaptive test (CAT) and a 6-item, static short-form for Concern with Death and Dying. Conclusions The HDQLIFE Concern with Death and Dying CAT and corresponding 6-item short form, and the 4-item calibrated HDQLIFE Meaning and Purpose Scale demonstrate excellent psychometric properties. These new measures have the potential to provide clinically meaningful information about end of life preferences and concerns to clinicians and researchers working with individuals with HD. In addition, these measures may also be relevant and useful for other terminal conditions. PMID:27393121

  3. Reversal of Phenotypic Abnormalities by CRISPR/Cas9-Mediated Gene Correction in Huntington Disease Patient-Derived Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Xiaohong; Tay, Yilin; Sim, Bernice; Yoon, Su-In; Huang, Yihui; Ooi, Jolene; Utami, Kagistia Hana; Ziaei, Amin; Ng, Bryan; Radulescu, Carola; Low, Donovan; Ng, Alvin Yu Jin; Loh, Marie; Venkatesh, Byrappa; Ginhoux, Florent; Augustine, George J; Pouladi, Mahmoud A

    2017-03-14

    Huntington disease (HD) is a dominant neurodegenerative disorder caused by a CAG repeat expansion in HTT. Here we report correction of HD human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) using a CRISPR-Cas9 and piggyBac transposon-based approach. We show that both HD and corrected isogenic hiPSCs can be differentiated into excitable, synaptically active forebrain neurons. We further demonstrate that phenotypic abnormalities in HD hiPSC-derived neural cells, including impaired neural rosette formation, increased susceptibility to growth factor withdrawal, and deficits in mitochondrial respiration, are rescued in isogenic controls. Importantly, using genome-wide expression analysis, we show that a number of apparent gene expression differences detected between HD and non-related healthy control lines are absent between HD and corrected lines, suggesting that these differences are likely related to genetic background rather than HD-specific effects. Our study demonstrates correction of HD hiPSCs and associated phenotypic abnormalities, and the importance of isogenic controls for disease modeling using hiPSCs. Copyright © 2017 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Reversal of Phenotypic Abnormalities by CRISPR/Cas9-Mediated Gene Correction in Huntington Disease Patient-Derived Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaohong Xu

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Huntington disease (HD is a dominant neurodegenerative disorder caused by a CAG repeat expansion in HTT. Here we report correction of HD human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs using a CRISPR-Cas9 and piggyBac transposon-based approach. We show that both HD and corrected isogenic hiPSCs can be differentiated into excitable, synaptically active forebrain neurons. We further demonstrate that phenotypic abnormalities in HD hiPSC-derived neural cells, including impaired neural rosette formation, increased susceptibility to growth factor withdrawal, and deficits in mitochondrial respiration, are rescued in isogenic controls. Importantly, using genome-wide expression analysis, we show that a number of apparent gene expression differences detected between HD and non-related healthy control lines are absent between HD and corrected lines, suggesting that these differences are likely related to genetic background rather than HD-specific effects. Our study demonstrates correction of HD hiPSCs and associated phenotypic abnormalities, and the importance of isogenic controls for disease modeling using hiPSCs.

  5. Functional impairment of precerebral arteries in Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kobal, Jan; Cankar, Ksenija; Pretnar, Janja; Zaletel, Marjan; Kobal, Lucijan; Teran, Natasa; Melik, Ziva

    2017-01-15

    Cardiovascular pathology of Huntington disease (HD) appears to be complex; while microvascular dysfunction seems to appear early, deaths from cardiomyopathy and stroke might occur in the late phase of HD. Our study evaluated global risk factors for coronary heart disease (CHD), structure and function of precerebral arteries in 41 HD subjects and 41 matched controls. HD subjects were divided into groups by the United Huntington disease rating scale (presymptomatic-PHD, early-EHD, midstage-MHD and late-LHD). CHD risk factors assessment and Doppler examination of precerebral arteries were performed, including measurements of the carotid artery intima-media thickness (IMT), and parameters indicating local carotid artery distensibility (stiffness index β, pulse wave velocity, pressure strain elasticity module and carotid artery compliance). In the HD and controls we identified a comparable number of non-obstructive plaques (50% lumen narrowing) were found. There was significantly increased IMT in MHD. In PHD and EHD the parameters of arterial stiffness were significantly higher and the carotid artery compliance was significantly lower. Our results reveal functional vascular pathology in PHD, EHD, and MHD. Precerebral arteries dysfunction in HD therefore appears to be mostly functional and in agreement with recently described autonomic nervous system changes in HD. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Deep brain stimulation in Huntington's disease: assessment of potential targets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Mayur; Deogaonkar, Milind

    2015-05-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is an autosomal-dominant neurodegenerative disorder that has very few effective therapeutic interventions. Since the disease has a defined neural circuitry abnormality, neuromodulation could be an option. Case reports, original research, and animal model studies were selected from the databases of Medline and PubMed. All related studies published up to July 2014 were included in this review. The following search terms were used: "Deep brain stimulation," "DBS," "thalamotomy," "pallidal stimulation," and "Huntington's Disease," "HD," "chorea," or "hyperkinetic movement disorders." This review examines potential nodes in the HD circuitry that could be modulated using deep brain stimulation (DBS) therapy. With rapid evolution of imaging and ability to reach difficult targets in the brain with refined DBS technology, some phenotypes of HD could potentially be treated with DBS in the near future. Further clinical studies are warranted to validate the efficacy of neuromodulation and to determine the most optimal target for HD. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. It wasn't Witchcraft--It was Huntington Disease!

    Science.gov (United States)

    Penaranda, Eribeth; Garcia, Angel; Montgomery, Lisa

    2011-01-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is an autosomal-dominant, incurable, progressive disorder that manifests with chorea and behavioral and cognitive impairment. The disease usually occurs during the fourth or fifth decade of life; however, it may present at any age. Clinical suspicion is confirmed by genetic testing. Death occurs, on average, 15 to 20 years after the onset of symptoms. Here we report about a Hispanic woman and her family who were affected by the disease; this case illustrates the role of cultural values and beliefs in the decision-making process, as well as the importance of the physician's cultural competency in fostering a trusting relationship that may lessen the burden of catastrophic diseases on individuals, families, and society at-large.

  8. Clinical neurotransplantation protocol for Huntington's and Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopez, William Omar Contreras; Nikkhah, Guido; Kahlert, Ulf D; Maciaczyk, Donata; Bogiel, Tomasz; Moellers, Sven; Schültke, Elisabeth; Döbrössy, Máté; Maciaczyk, Jaroslaw

    2013-01-01

    The concept of transplantation of neuronal cells to treat Huntington's and Parkinson's diseases is based on the proven principle that dopaminergic and GABA-ergic progenitor neurons (from the human developing ventral mesencephalon and whole ganglionic eminence) can survive, differentiate and functionally integrate into an allogenic host brain. However, several donor and host-specific variables play a major role in the safety and outcome of this procedure. In this paper, we seek to summarize an updated neural transplantation protocol, based on our institutional experience and many years of collaboration with other neurotransplantation centers. We present a detailed clinical neurotransplantation protocol for Parkinson's (PD) and Huntington's (HD) diseases with special emphasis in understanding the anatomical relationships of the human fetal tissue that are relevant for selection of the desired cell populations. Two detailed step-wise neurotransplantation protocols are presented, outlining strategies facilitating the avoidance of possible procedure-related complications. In this paper we delineated some crucial technical factors enabling the execution of a safe and effective neural transplantation. The protocols presented here might contribute to further development of the experimental clinical neurotransplantation towards a routine therapeutic procedure.

  9. Inclusions of R6/2 Mice Are Not Amyloid and Differ Structurally from Those of Huntington Disease Brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    André, William; Sandt, Christophe; Nondier, Isabelle; Djian, Philippe; Hoffner, Guylaine

    2017-05-16

    R6/2 mice contain an N-terminal fragment of human huntingtin with an expanded polyQ and develop a neurological disease resembling Huntington disease. Although the brain of R6/2 mice contains numerous inclusions, there is very little neuronal death. In that respect, R6/2 mice differ from patients with Huntington disease whose striatum and cerebral cortex develop inclusions associated with extensive neuronal loss. We have previously demonstrated using synchrotron-based infrared microspectroscopy that the striatum and the cortex of patients with Huntington disease contained inclusions specifically enriched in amyloid β-sheets. We had concluded that the presence of an amyloid motif conferred toxicity to the inclusions. We demonstrate here by synchrotron based infrared microspectroscopy in transmission and attenuated total reflectance mode that the inclusions of R6/2 mice possess no detectable amyloid and are composed of proteins whose structure is not distinguishable from that of the surrounding soluble proteins. The difference in structure between the inclusions of patients affected by Huntington disease and those of R6/2 mice might explain why the former but not the latter cause neuronal death.

  10. The ubiquitin proteasome system in Huntington disease : impairment of the proteolytic machinery aggravates huntingtin aggregation and toxicity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pril, Remko de

    2011-01-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is the best know of the polyglutamine disorders which are caused by the excessive expansion of a CAG repeat in a transcribed gene. It is estimated that there are 1300 HD patients in the Netherlands and even more people that are currently at risk. Translation of the CAG repeat

  11. Dysfunctional mitochondrial respiration in the striatum of the Huntington's disease transgenic R6/2 mouse model

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Aidt, Frederik Heurlin; Nielsen, Signe Marie Borch; Kanters, Jørgen

    2013-01-01

    Metabolic dysfunction and mitochondrial involvement are recognised as part of the pathology in Huntington's Disease (HD). Post-mortem examinations of the striatum from end-stage HD patients have shown a decrease in the in vitro activity of complexes II, III and IV of the electron transport system...

  12. A PET Study of Word Generation in Huntington's Disease: Effects of Lexical Competition and Verb/Noun Category

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lepron, Evelyne; Peran, Patrice; Cardebat, Dominique; Demonet, Jean-Francois

    2009-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) patients show language production deficits that have been conceptualized as a consequence of executive disorders, e.g. selection deficit between candidate words or switching between word categories. More recently, a deficit of word generation specific to verbs has been reported, which might relate to impaired action…

  13. Widespread AAV1- and AAV2-mediated transgene expression in the nonhuman primate brain: implications for Huntington?s disease

    OpenAIRE

    Hadaczek, Piotr; Stanek, Lisa; Ciesielska, Agnieszka; Sudhakar, Vivek; Samaranch, Lluis; Pivirotto, Philip; Bringas, John; O?Riordan, Catherine; Mastis, Bryan; San Sebastian, Waldy; Forsayeth, John; Cheng, Seng H; Bankiewicz, Krystof S.; Shihabuddin, Lamya S.

    2016-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is caused by a toxic gain-of-function associated with the expression of the mutant huntingtin (htt) protein. Therefore, the use of RNA interference to inhibit Htt expression could represent a disease-modifying therapy. The potential of two recombinant adeno-associated viral vectors (AAV), AAV1 and AAV2, to transduce the cortico-striatal tissues that are predominantly affected in HD was explored. Green fluorescent protein was used as a reporter in each vector to show ...

  14. Meclizine is neuroprotective in models of Huntington's disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gohil, Vishal M.; Offner, Nicolas; Walker, James A.; Sheth, Sunil A.; Fossale, Elisa; Gusella, James F.; MacDonald, Marcy E.; Neri, Christian; Mootha, Vamsi K.

    2011-01-01

    Defects in cellular energy metabolism represent an early feature in a variety of human neurodegenerative diseases. Recent studies have shown that targeting energy metabolism can protect against neuronal cell death in such diseases. Here, we show that meclizine, a clinically used drug that we have recently shown to silence oxidative metabolism, suppresses apoptotic cell death in a murine cellular model of polyglutamine (polyQ) toxicity. We further show that this protective effect extends to neuronal dystrophy and cell death in Caenorhabditis elegans and Drosophila melanogaster models of polyQ toxicity. Meclizine's mechanism of action is not attributable to its anti-histaminergic or anti-muscarinic activity, but rather, strongly correlates with its ability to suppress mitochondrial respiration. Since meclizine is an approved drug that crosses the blood–brain barrier, it may hold therapeutic potential in the treatment of polyQ toxicity disorders, such as Huntington's disease. PMID:20977989

  15. Multiple phenotypes in Huntington disease mouse neural stem cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ritch, James J; Valencia, Antonio; Alexander, Jonathan; Sapp, Ellen; Gatune, Leah; Sangrey, Gavin R; Sinha, Saurabh; Scherber, Cally M; Zeitlin, Scott; Sadri-Vakili, Ghazaleh; Irimia, Daniel; Difiglia, Marian; Kegel, Kimberly B

    2012-05-01

    Neural stem (NS) cells are a limitless resource, and thus superior to primary neurons for drug discovery provided they exhibit appropriate disease phenotypes. Here we established NS cells for cellular studies of Huntington's disease (HD). HD is a heritable neurodegenerative disease caused by a mutation resulting in an increased number of glutamines (Q) within a polyglutamine tract in Huntingtin (Htt). NS cells were isolated from embryonic wild-type (Htt(7Q/7Q)) and "knock-in" HD (Htt(140Q/140Q)) mice expressing full-length endogenous normal or mutant Htt. NS cells were also developed from mouse embryonic stem cells that were devoid of Htt (Htt(-/-)), or knock-in cells containing human exon1 with an N-terminal FLAG epitope tag and with 7Q or 140Q inserted into one of the mouse alleles (Htt(F7Q/7Q) and Htt(F140Q/7Q)). Compared to Htt(7Q/7Q) NS cells, HD Htt(140Q/140Q) NS cells showed significantly reduced levels of cholesterol, increased levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS), and impaired motility. The heterozygous Htt(F140Q/7Q) NS cells had increased ROS and decreased motility compared to Htt(F7Q/7Q). These phenotypes of HD NS cells replicate those seen in HD patients or in primary cell or in vivo models of HD. Huntingtin "knock-out" NS cells (Htt(-/-)) also had impaired motility, but in contrast to HD cells had increased cholesterol. In addition, Htt(140Q/140Q) NS cells had higher phospho-AKT/AKT ratios than Htt(7Q/7Q) NS cells in resting conditions and after BDNF stimulation, suggesting mutant htt affects AKT dependent growth factor signaling. Upon differentiation, the Htt(7Q/7Q) and Htt(140Q/140Q) generated numerous Beta(III)-Tubulin- and GABA-positive neurons; however, after 15 days the cellular architecture of the differentiated Htt(140Q/140Q) cultures changed compared to Htt(7Q/7Q) cultures and included a marked increase of GFAP-positive cells. Our findings suggest that NS cells expressing endogenous mutant Htt will be useful for study of mechanisms of HD

  16. Mutant Huntingtin Does Not Affect the Intrinsic Phenotype of Human Huntington's Disease T Lymphocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, James R C; Träger, Ulrike; Andre, Ralph; Tabrizi, Sarah J

    2015-01-01

    Huntington's disease is a fatal neurodegenerative condition caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the huntingtin gene. The peripheral innate immune system is dysregulated in Huntington's disease and may contribute to its pathogenesis. However, it is not clear whether or to what extent the adaptive immune system is also involved. Here, we carry out the first comprehensive investigation of human ex vivo T lymphocytes in Huntington's disease, focusing on the frequency of a range of T lymphocyte subsets, as well as analysis of proliferation, cytokine production and gene transcription. In contrast to the innate immune system, the intrinsic phenotype of T lymphocytes does not appear to be affected by the presence of mutant huntingtin, with Huntington's disease T lymphocytes exhibiting no significant functional differences compared to control cells. The transcriptional profile of T lymphocytes also does not appear to be significantly affected, suggesting that peripheral immune dysfunction in Huntington's disease is likely to be mediated primarily by the innate rather than the adaptive immune system. This study increases our understanding of the effects of Huntington's disease on peripheral tissues, while further demonstrating the differential effects of the mutant protein on different but related cell types. Finally, this study suggests that the potential use of novel therapeutics aimed at modulating the Huntington's disease innate immune system should not be extended to include the adaptive immune system.

  17. Altered PDE10A expression detectable early before symptomatic onset in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niccolini, Flavia; Haider, Salman; Reis Marques, Tiago; Muhlert, Nils; Tziortzi, Andri C; Searle, Graham E; Natesan, Sridhar; Piccini, Paola; Kapur, Shitij; Rabiner, Eugenii A; Gunn, Roger N; Tabrizi, Sarah J; Politis, Marios

    2015-10-01

    There is an urgent need for early biomarkers and novel disease-modifying therapies in Huntington's disease. Huntington's disease pathology involves the toxic effect of mutant huntingtin primarily in striatal medium spiny neurons, which highly express phosphodiesterase 10A (PDE10A). PDE10A hydrolyses cAMP/cGMP signalling cascades, thus having a key role in the regulation of striatal output, and in promoting neuronal survival. PDE10A could be a key therapeutic target in Huntington's disease. Here, we used combined positron emission tomography (PET) and multimodal magnetic resonance imaging to assess PDE10A expression in vivo in a unique cohort of 12 early premanifest Huntington's disease gene carriers with a mean estimated 90% probability of 25 years before the predicted onset of clinical symptoms. We show bidirectional changes in PDE10A expression in premanifest Huntington's disease gene carriers, which are associated with the probability of symptomatic onset. PDE10A expression in early premanifest Huntington's disease was decreased in striatum and pallidum and increased in motor thalamic nuclei, compared to a group of matched healthy controls. Connectivity-based analysis revealed prominent PDE10A decreases confined in the sensorimotor-striatum and in striatonigral and striatopallidal projecting segments. The ratio between higher PDE10A expression in motor thalamic nuclei and lower PDE10A expression in striatopallidal projecting striatum was the strongest correlate with higher probability of symptomatic conversion in early premanifest Huntington's disease gene carriers. Our findings demonstrate in vivo, a novel and earliest pathophysiological mechanism underlying Huntington's disease with direct implications for the development of new pharmacological treatments, which can promote neuronal survival and improve outcome in Huntington's disease gene carriers. © The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain. All rights

  18. Mutant huntingtin activates Nrf2-responsive genes and impairs dopamine synthesis in a PC12 model of Huntington's disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    den Dunnen Johan T

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Huntington's disease is a progressive autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disorder that is caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the HD or Huntington's disease gene. Although micro array studies on patient and animal tissue provide valuable information, the primary effect of mutant huntingtin will inevitably be masked by secondary processes in advanced stages of the disease. Thus, cell models are instrumental to study early, direct effects of mutant huntingtin. mRNA changes were studied in an inducible PC12 model of Huntington's disease, before and after aggregates became visible, to identify groups of genes that could play a role in the early pathology of Huntington's disease. Results Before aggregation, up-regulation of gene expression predominated, while after aggregates became visible, down-regulation and up-regulation occurred to the same extent. After aggregates became visible there was a down-regulation of dopamine biosynthesis genes accompanied by down-regulation of dopamine levels in culture, indicating the utility of this model to identify functionally relevant pathways. Furthermore, genes of the anti-oxidant Nrf2-ARE pathway were up-regulated, possibly as a protective mechanism. In parallel, we discovered alterations in genes which may result in increased oxidative stress and damage. Conclusion Up-regulation of gene expression may be more important in HD pathology than previously appreciated. In addition, given the pathogenic impact of oxidative stress and neuroinflammation, the Nrf2-ARE signaling pathway constitutes a new attractive therapeutic target for HD.

  19. A novel manganese-dependent ATM-p53 signaling pathway is selectively impaired in patient-based neuroprogenitor and murine striatal models of Huntington's disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tidball, Andrew M.; Bryan, Miles R.; Uhouse, Michael A.; Kumar, Kevin K.; Aboud, Asad A.; Feist, Jack E.; Ess, Kevin C.; Neely, M. Diana; Aschner, Michael; Bowman, Aaron B.

    2015-01-01

    The essential micronutrient manganese is enriched in brain, especially in the basal ganglia. We sought to identify neuronal signaling pathways responsive to neurologically relevant manganese levels, as previous data suggested that alterations in striatal manganese handling occur in Huntington's disease (HD) models. We found that p53 phosphorylation at serine 15 is the most responsive cell signaling event to manganese exposure (of 18 tested) in human neuroprogenitors and a mouse striatal cell line. Manganese-dependent activation of p53 was severely diminished in HD cells. Inhibitors of ataxia telangiectasia mutated (ATM) kinase decreased manganese-dependent phosphorylation of p53. Likewise, analysis of ATM autophosphorylation and additional ATM kinase targets, H2AX and CHK2, support a role for ATM in the activation of p53 by manganese and that a defect in this process occurs in HD. Furthermore, the deficit in Mn-dependent activation of ATM kinase in HD neuroprogenitors was highly selective, as DNA damage and oxidative injury, canonical activators of ATM, did not show similar deficits. We assessed cellular manganese handling to test for correlations with the ATM-p53 pathway, and we observed reduced Mn accumulation in HD human neuroprogenitors and HD mouse striatal cells at manganese exposures associated with altered p53 activation. To determine if this phenotype contributes to the deficit in manganese-dependent ATM activation, we used pharmacological manipulation to equalize manganese levels between HD and control mouse striatal cells and rescued the ATM-p53 signaling deficit. Collectively, our data demonstrate selective alterations in manganese biology in cellular models of HD manifest in ATM-p53 signaling. PMID:25489053

  20. Identification of genetic variants associated with Huntington's disease progression: a genome-wide association study

    OpenAIRE

    Hensman Moss, Davina J; Pardinas, Antonio; Langbehn, Douglas; Lo, Kitty; Leavitt, Blair R; Roos, Raymund; Durr, Alexandra; Mead, Simon; Holmans, Peter; Jones, Lesley; Tabrizi, Sarah J; Coleman, A; Santos, R Dar; Decolongon, J; Sturrock, A

    2017-01-01

    Background\\ud \\ud Huntington's disease is caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the huntingtin gene, HTT. Age at onset has been used as a quantitative phenotype in genetic analysis looking for Huntington's disease modifiers, but is hard to define and not always available. Therefore, we aimed to generate a novel measure of disease progression and to identify genetic markers associated with this progression measure.\\ud \\ud Methods\\ud \\ud We generated a progression score on the basis of principal ...

  1. A Prospective Pilot Trial for Pallidal Deep Brain Stimulation in Huntington's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wojtecki, Lars; Groiss, Stefan J; Ferrea, Stefano; Elben, Saskia; Hartmann, Christian J; Dunnett, Stephen B; Rosser, Anne; Saft, Carsten; Südmeyer, Martin; Ohmann, Christian; Schnitzler, Alfons; Vesper, Jan

    2015-01-01

    Movement disorders in Huntington's disease are often medically refractive. The aim of the trial was assessment of procedure safety of deep brain stimulation, equality of internal- and external-pallidal stimulation and efficacy followed-up for 6 months in a prospective pilot trial. In a controlled double-blind phase six patients (four chorea-dominant, two Westphal-variant) with predominant movement disorder were randomly assigned to either the sequence of 6-week internal- or 6-week external-pallidal stimulation, or vice versa, followed by further 3 months chronic pallidal stimulation at the target with best effect-side-effect ratio. Primary endpoints were changes in the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale motor-score, chorea subscore, and total motor-score 4 (blinded-video ratings), comparing internal- versus external-pallidal stimulation, and 6 months versus baseline. Secondary endpoints assessed scores on dystonia, hypokinesia, cognition, mood, functionality/disability, and quality-of-life. Intention-to-treat analysis of all patients (n = 3 in each treatment sequence): Both targets were equal in terms of efficacy. Chorea subscores decreased significantly over 6 months (-5.3 (60.2%), p = 0.037). Effects on dystonia were not significant over the group due to it consisting of three responders (>50% improvement) and three non-responders. Westphal patients did not improve. Cognition was stable. Mood and some functionality/disability and quality-of-life scores improved significantly. Eight adverse events and two additional serious adverse events - mostly internal-pallidal stimulation-related - resolved without sequalae. No procedure-related complications occurred. Pallidal deep brain stimulation was demonstrated to be a safe treatment option for the reduction of chorea in Huntington's disease. Their effects on chorea and dystonia and on quality-of-life should be examined in larger controlled trials.

  2. A Case of Juvenile Huntington Disease in a 6-Year-Old Boy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jun-Sang Sunwoo

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Huntington disease is a neurodegenerative disorder distinguished by the triad of dominant inheritance, choreoathetosis and dementia, usually with onset in the fourth and fifth decades. It is caused by an unstable cytosine-adenine-guanine (CAG trinucleotide repeat expansion in the gene IT15 in locus 4p16.3. Juvenile HD that constitutes about 3% to 10% of all patients is clinically different from adult-onset form and characterized by a larger number of CAG repeats typically exceeding 60. We report a case of a 6-year-old boy with myoclonic seizure and 140 CAG repeats confirmed by molecular genetic analysis.

  3. Neurolinguistic characteristics of language production in Huntington's disease: a preliminary report.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gordon, W P; Illes, J

    1987-05-01

    Samples of spontaneous and descriptive speech were obtained from 12 patients with Huntington's disease (HD) and 24 at risk (AR) controls. The data were assessed according to a neurolinguistic protocol. HD was identified with a significant reduction in number of words produced, a diminished level of syntactic complexity, reductions of melodic line, phrase length, articulatory agility, and grammatical form, and increases in paraphasic errors and word-finding difficulty. The data were interpreted in support of the hypothesis that neostriatal pathology affects linguistic processing.

  4. Everyday Functioning in Huntington's Disease: A Laboratory-Based Study of Financial Management Capacity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheppard, David P; Pirogovsky-Turk, Eva; Woods, Steven Paul; Holden, Heather M; Nicoll, Diane R; Filoteo, J Vincent; Corey-Bloom, Jody; Gilbert, Paul E

    2017-01-01

    One important limitation of prior studies examining functional decline in Huntington's disease (HD) has been the reliance on self-reported measures of ability. Since report-based methods can be biased by lack of insight, depression, and cognitive impairment, contrasting self-reported ability with measures that assess capacity may lead to a more comprehensive estimation of real-world functioning. The present study examined self-reported ability to perform instrumental activities of daily living (iADLs) and performance-based financial management capacity in 20 patients diagnosed with mild-moderate Huntington's disease (HD) and 20 demographically similar healthy adults. HD patients reported significantly greater declines in their ability to manage finances. On the capacity measure of financial management, HD patients performed significantly below healthy adults. Additionally, in the HD group there were no significant correlations between self-reported ability and capacity measures of financial management. HD patients endorsed declines in global iADL ability and exhibited deficits in functional capacity when performing a financial management task. Capacity measures may aid in assessing the extent to which HD patients accurately estimate real-world iADL performance, and the present findings suggest that such measures of capacity may be related to the cognitive, but not motor or affective, symptoms of HD.

  5. Increased brain tissue sodium concentration in Huntington's Disease - a sodium imaging study at 4 T.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reetz, Kathrin; Romanzetti, Sandro; Dogan, Imis; Saß, Christian; Werner, Cornelius J; Schiefer, Johannes; Schulz, Jörg B; Shah, N Jon

    2012-10-15

    The neuropathological hallmark of the autosomal dominantly inherited, neurodegenerative disorder Huntington's disease is progressive striatal loss starting several years prior to symptom manifestation. Magnetic resonance (MR) imaging has been widely used to detect altered structure in premanifest and early Huntington's disease. Given that neurodegeneration is likely preceded by substantial neuronal dysfunction, we used in vivo sodium MR imaging, which has been shown to be sensitive to cell death and viability, to investigate cellular and metabolic integrity of Huntington's disease brain tissue. We studied a total of thirteen healthy controls and thirteen Huntington's disease gene carriers (11 manifest and 2 premanifest). The manifest Huntington's disease group was subdivided into stages 1 and 2 according to their Total Functional Capacity scores. Clinical total motor and cognitive scores, as well as calibrated sodium and T1-weighted MR images were obtained with a 4 T Siemens MR scanner. Sodium images were acquired by means of a constant time imaging technique with an ultra-short "echo time". T1-weighted MR images were further analysed with voxel-based morphometry. The absolute total sodium concentration and grey matter values were measured in several Huntington's disease-specific and also non-specific areas. Statistical analysis of variance and Pearson correlation were applied. In Huntington's disease subjects, we found an increase of total sodium concentration of the entire brain compared to controls. Increased total sodium concentration values were found in structurally affected, but also in some non-affected, regions. The highest total sodium concentration values were found in the bilateral caudate, which was associated with caudate grey matter atrophy and CAG repeat length. In all Huntington's disease subjects we further found a profound increase of total sodium concentration in the putamen, pallidum, thalamus, hippocampus, insula, precuneus and occipital

  6. Dopamine imbalance in Huntington's disease: a mechanism for the lack of behavioral flexibility

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Chen, Jane Y; Wang, Elizabeth A; Cepeda, Carlos; Levine, Michael S

    2013-01-01

    Dopamine (DA) plays an essential role in the control of coordinated movements. Alterations in DA balance in the striatum lead to pathological conditions such as Parkinson's and Huntington's diseases (HD...

  7. Huntington's disease does not appear to increase the risk of diabetes mellitus

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Boesgaard, T W; Nielsen, Troels Tolstrup; Josefsen, Knud Elnegaard

    2009-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is an autosomal, dominantly inherited, neurodegenerative disorder characterised by neurological, cognitive and psychiatric symptoms. HD has been associated with diabetes mellitus, which is, to some extent, supported by studies in transgenic HD mice. In transgenic mice...

  8. The story of George Huntington and his disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kalyan B Bhattacharyya

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available George Huntington described some families with choreiform movements in 1872 in the United States of America and since then many such families have been described in other parts of the world and works on the genetics of the disease have brought new vistas in the understanding of the disease. In 1958, Americo Negrette, a young Venezuelan physician observed similar subjects in the vicinity of Lake Maracaibo which was presented by his co-worker, Ramon Avilla Giron at New York in 1972 when United States of America had been commemorating the centenary year of Huntington′s disease. Nancy Wexler, a psychoanalyst, whose mother had been suffering from the disease attended the meeting and organized a research team to Venezuela and they systematically studied more than 18,000 individuals in order to work out a common pedigree. They identified the genetic locus of the disease in the short arm of chromosome 4 and observed that it was a trinucleotide repeat disorder.

  9. Human glia can both induce and rescue aspects of disease phenotype in Huntington disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Benraiss, Abdellatif; Wang, Su; Herrlinger, Stephanie

    2016-01-01

    The causal contribution of glial pathology to Huntington disease (HD) has not been heavily explored. To define the contribution of glia to HD, we established human HD glial chimeras by neonatally engrafting immunodeficient mice with mutant huntingtin (mHTT)-expressing human glial progenitor cells...

  10. Synaptopathic mechanisms of neurodegeneration and dementia: Insights from Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tyebji, Shiraz; Hannan, Anthony J

    2017-06-01

    Dementia encapsulates a set of symptoms that include loss of mental abilities such as memory, problem solving or language, and reduces a person's ability to perform daily activities. Alzheimer's disease is the most common form of dementia, however dementia can also occur in other neurological disorders such as Huntington's disease (HD). Many studies have demonstrated that loss of neuronal cell function manifests pre-symptomatically and thus is a relevant therapeutic target to alleviate symptoms. Synaptopathy, the physiological dysfunction of synapses, is now being approached as the target for many neurological and psychiatric disorders, including HD. HD is an autosomal dominant and progressive degenerative disorder, with clinical manifestations that encompass movement, cognition, mood and behaviour. HD is one of the most common tandem repeat disorders and is caused by a trinucleotide (CAG) repeat expansion, encoding an extended polyglutamine tract in the huntingtin protein. Animal models as well as human studies have provided detailed, although not exhaustive, evidence of synaptic dysfunction in HD. In this review, we discuss the neuropathology of HD and how the changes in synaptic signalling in the diseased brain lead to its symptoms, which include dementia. Here, we review and discuss the mechanisms by which the 'molecular orchestras' and their 'synaptic symphonies' are disrupted in neurodegeneration and dementia, focusing on HD as a model disease. We also explore the therapeutic strategies currently in pre-clinical and clinical testing that are targeted towards improving synaptic function in HD. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Cognitive and Brain Reserve in Prodromal Huntington Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonner-Jackson, Aaron; Long, Jeffrey D.; Westervelt, Holly; Tremont, Geoffrey; Aylward, Elizabeth; Paulsen, Jane S.

    2013-01-01

    Background Huntington disease (HD) is associated with decline in cognition and progressive morphological changes in brain structures. Cognitive reserve may represent a mechanism by which disease-related decline may be delayed or slowed. The current study examined the relationship between cognitive reserve and longitudinal change in cognitive functioning and brain volumes among prodromal (gene expansion-positive) HD individuals. Methods Participants were genetically-confirmed individuals with prodromal HD enrolled in the PREDICT-HD study. Cognitive reserve was computed as the composite of performance on a lexical task estimating premorbid intellectual level, occupational status, and years of education. Linear mixed effects regression (LMER) was used to examine longitudinal changes on 4 cognitive measures and 3 brain volumes over approximately 6 years. Results Higher cognitive reserve was significantly associated with a slower rate of change on one cognitive measure (Trail Making Test, Part B) and slower rate of volume loss in two brain structures (caudate, putamen) for those estimated to be closest to motor disease onset. This relationship was not observed among those estimated to be further from motor disease onset. Conclusions Our findings demonstrate a relationship between cognitive reserve and both a measure of executive functioning and integrity of certain brain structures in prodromal HD individuals. PMID:23702309

  12. Altered brain mechanisms of emotion processing in pre-manifest Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Novak, Marianne J U; Warren, Jason D; Henley, Susie M D; Draganski, Bogdan; Frackowiak, Richard S; Tabrizi, Sarah J

    2012-04-01

    Huntington's disease is an inherited neurodegenerative disease that causes motor, cognitive and psychiatric impairment, including an early decline in ability to recognize emotional states in others. The pathophysiology underlying the earliest manifestations of the disease is not fully understood; the objective of our study was to clarify this. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to investigate changes in brain mechanisms of emotion recognition in pre-manifest carriers of the abnormal Huntington's disease gene (subjects with pre-manifest Huntington's disease): 16 subjects with pre-manifest Huntington's disease and 14 control subjects underwent 1.5 tesla magnetic resonance scanning while viewing pictures of facial expressions from the Ekman and Friesen series. Disgust, anger and happiness were chosen as emotions of interest. Disgust is the emotion in which recognition deficits have most commonly been detected in Huntington's disease; anger is the emotion in which impaired recognition was detected in the largest behavioural study of emotion recognition in pre-manifest Huntington's disease to date; and happiness is a positive emotion to contrast with disgust and anger. Ekman facial expressions were also used to quantify emotion recognition accuracy outside the scanner and structural magnetic resonance imaging with voxel-based morphometry was used to assess the relationship between emotion recognition accuracy and regional grey matter volume. Emotion processing in pre-manifest Huntington's disease was associated with reduced neural activity for all three emotions in partially separable functional networks. Furthermore, the Huntington's disease-associated modulation of disgust and happiness processing was negatively correlated with genetic markers of pre-manifest disease progression in distributed, largely extrastriatal networks. The modulated disgust network included insulae, cingulate cortices, pre- and postcentral gyri, precunei, cunei, bilateral putamena

  13. Multivariate clustering of progression profiles reveals different depression patterns in prodromal Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Ji-in; Long, Jeffrey D; Mills, James A; McCusker, Elizabeth; Paulsen, Jane S

    2015-11-01

    Although Huntington disease (HD) is caused by an autosomal dominant mutation, its phenotypic presentation differs widely. Variability in clinical phenotypes of HD may reflect the existence of disease subtypes. This hypothesis was tested in prodromal participants from the longitudinal Neurobiological Predictors of Huntington Disease (PREDICT-HD) study. We performed clustering using longitudinal data assessing motor, cognitive, and depression symptoms. Using data from 521 participants with 2,716 data points, we fit growth mixture models (GMM) that identify groups based on multivariate trajectories. In various GMM, different phases of disease progression were partitioned by progression trajectories of motor and cognitive signs, and by overall level of depression symptoms. More progressed motor signs were accompanied by more progressed cognitive signs, but not always by higher levels of depressive symptoms. In several models, there were at least 2 groups with similar trajectories for motor and cognitive signs that showed different levels for depression symptoms-one with a very low level of depression and the other with a higher level of depression. Findings indicate that at least intermediate HD progression might be associated with different levels of depression. Depression is one of the few symptoms that is treatable in HD and has implications for clinical care. Identification of potential depression subtypes may also help to select appropriate patients for clinical trials. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  14. Huntington Disease: Linking Pathogenesis to the Development of Experimental Therapeutics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mestre, Tiago A; Sampaio, Cristina

    2017-02-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is an autosomal dominant neurodegenerative condition caused by a CAG trinucleotide expansion in the huntingtin gene. At present, the HD field is experiencing exciting times with the assessment for the first time in human subjects of interventions aimed at core disease mechanisms. Out of a portfolio of interventions that claim a potential disease-modifying effect in HD, the target huntingtin has more robust validation. In this review, we discuss the spectrum of huntingtin-lowering therapies that are currently being considered. We provide a critical appraisal of the validation of huntingtin as a drug target, describing the advantages, challenges, and limitations of the proposed therapeutic interventions. The development of these new therapies relies strongly on the knowledge of HD pathogenesis and the ability to translate this knowledge into validated pharmacodynamic biomarkers. Altogether, the goal is to support a rational drug development that is ethical and cost-effective. Among the pharmacodynamic biomarkers under development, the quantification of mutant huntingtin in the cerebral spinal fluid and PET imaging targeting huntingtin or phosphodiesterase 10A deserve special attention. Huntingtin-lowering therapeutics are eagerly awaited as the first interventions that may be able to change the course of HD in a meaningful way.

  15. Emotion perception and electrophysiological correlates in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Croft, R J; McKernan, F; Gray, M; Churchyard, A; Georgiou-Karistianis, N

    2014-08-01

    This study aimed to characterise, emotion perception deficits in symptomatic Huntington's disease (HD) via the use of event-related potentials (ERPs). ERP data were recorded during a computerised facial expression task in 11 HD participants and 11 matched controls. Expression (scrambled, neutral, happy, angry, disgust) classification accuracy and intensity were assessed. Relationships between ERP indices and clinical disease characteristics were also examined. Accuracy was significantly lower for HD relative to controls, due to reduced performance for neutral, angry and disgust (but not happy) faces. Intensity ratings did not differ between groups. HD participants displayed significantly reduced visual processing amplitudes extending across pre-face (P100) and face-specific (N170) processing periods, whereas subsequent emotion processing amplitudes (N250) were similar across groups. Face-specific and emotion-specific derivations of the N170 and N250 ('neutral minus scrambled' and 'each emotion minus neutral', respectively) did not differ between groups. Our data suggest that the facial emotion recognition performance deficits in HD are primarily related to neural degeneration underlying 'generalised' visual processing, rather than face or emotional specific processing. ERPs are a useful tool to separate functionally discreet impairments in HD, and provide an important avenue for biomarker application that could more-selectively track disease progression. Copyright © 2014 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Disease stage, but not sex, predicts depression and psychological distress in Huntington's disease: A European population study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dale, Maria; Maltby, John; Shimozaki, Steve; Cramp, Rebecca; Rickards, Hugh

    2016-01-01

    Depression and anxiety significantly affect morbidity in Huntington's disease. Mice. models of Huntington's disease have identified sex differences in mood-like behaviours that vary across disease lifespan, but this interaction has not previously been explored in humans with Huntington's disease. However, among certain medical populations, evidence of sex differences in mood across various disease stages has been found, reflecting trends among the general population that women tend to experience anxiety and depression 1.5 to 2 times more than men. The current study examined whether disease stage and sex, either separately or as an interaction term, predicted anxiety and depression in Huntington's disease. A cross-sectional study of REGISTRY data involving 453 Huntington's disease participants from 12 European countries was undertaken using the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale. A series of multiple regression analyses were undertaken to discover to what extent disease stage and sex predicted anxiety, depression, and general distress after controlling for a number of known predictors of mood difficulties. Disease stage, but not sex, was found to predict depressive symptoms and general distress. Neither disease stage nor sex predicted anxiety. Furthermore, an interaction term computed for disease stage and sex did not contribute to the models tested. In terms of considering risks to developing depression and anxiety in the Huntington's disease population, practitioners may need to pay special attention to disease stage progression (but not sex differences) to enable early detection and treatment of depression (but not anxiety). Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. The impairment of emotion recognition in Huntington's disease extends to positive emotions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robotham, Laura; Sauter, Disa A; Bachoud-Lévi, Anne-Catherine; Trinkler, Iris

    2011-01-01

    Patients with Huntington's Disease (HD) are impaired in the recognition of emotional signals. However, the nature and extent of the impairment is controversial: it has variously been argued to disproportionately affect disgust (e.g., Sprengelmeyer et al., 1996), to be general for negative emotions (Snowden et al., 2008), or to be a consequence of item difficulty (Milders et al., 2003). Yet no study to date has included more than one positive stimulus category in emotion recognition tasks, and most studies have focused on the recognition of emotions from facial stimuli. In this study, we test the hypothesis that patients with HD may be impaired in their recognition of positive as well as negative emotional signals, by examining the recognition of a range of positive emotions from vocal cues. We present a study of 14 Huntington's patients and 15 controls performing a forced-choice task with a previously validated set of negative and positive non-verbal emotional vocalizations (Sauter and Scott, 2007). Although HD patients performed above chance for each emotion, they were found to be impaired in both positive and negative emotions, including pleasure, fear and anger. These findings complement previous work by demonstrating that impairments in emotion recognition in HD extend to positive and negative emotions, which may imply a general deficit. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Srl. All rights reserved.

  18. Silencing Huntington's chorea: Is RNA Interference a Potential Cure?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gerlinde A. Metz

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available In 1872, George Huntington described Huntington's disease as characterized by motor, cognitive and psychiatric impairments. Huntington's disease is a dominant and autosomal mutation on chromosome 4 featuring the insertion of numerous CAG repeats. CAG codes for the amino acid, glutmanine that forms part of the Huntingtin protein (htt. Excess glutamine attachments make htt prone to accumulate in neurons. Three genes can be considered when developing therapies for Huntington's disease. They include targeting the symptoms of the disease, the progression of the disease and the cause of the disease. By using RNA interference (RNAi, the cause of the disease can be targeted. RNAi is a method that could potentially silence the formation of abnormal htt. This paper will discuss how RNAi could potentially cure Huntington's disease, by describing the genetic and proteinomic basis of Huntington's disease, the function of RNAi in Huntington's disease and the problems of benefits of RNAi. Preliminary work using RNAi in transgenic mice has shown a decrease in the behavioural expression of the mutant Huntington gene. There are several limitations associated with using RNAi as a gene therapy. For example, the effects of RNAi are short lived. A transposition system such as Sleeping Beauty can be used to increase the integration of the gene, however, for patients who currently have Huntington's disease, RNAi may potentially be used in combination with drugs or other treatments to target both symptoms and the underlying cause of Huntington's disease. This combination could eventually alleviate many painful symptoms associated with Huntington's disease and could even stop the progressive neurodegeneration of Huntington's disease. This review concludes that a substantial amount of new research is still necessary before RNAi is directly applicable to human patients with Huntington's disease.

  19. Liver function in Huntington's disease assessed by blood biochemical analyses in a clinical setting

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Signe Marie Borch; Vinther-Jensen, Tua; Nielsen, Jørgen E.

    2016-01-01

    dysfunction are seen. Blood levels of a wide range of hormones, metabolites and proteins have been analyzed in HD patients, identifying several changes associated with the disease. However, a comprehensive panel of liver function tests (LFT) has not been performed. We investigated a cohort of manifest......Huntington's disease (HD) is a dominantly inherited, progressive neurological disorder caused by a CAG repeat elongation in the huntingtin gene. In addition to motor-, psychiatric- A nd cognitive dysfunction, peripheral disease manifestations in the form of metabolic changes and cellular...... and premanifest HD gene-expansion carriers and controls, using a clinically applied panel of LFTs. Here, we demonstrate that the level of alkaline phosphatase is increased in manifest HD gene-expansion carriers compared to premanifest HD gene-expansion carriers and correlate with increased disease severity...

  20. Huntington disease in subjects from an Israeli Karaite community carrying alleles of intermediate and expanded CAG repeats in the HTT gene: Huntington disease or phenocopy?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herishanu, Yuval O; Parvari, Ruti; Pollack, Yaakov; Shelef, Ilan; Marom, Batia; Martino, Tiziana; Cannella, Milena; Squitieri, Ferdinando

    2009-02-15

    We report a cluster of patients from a Karaite Jew community with a movement disorder suggestive of Huntington disease (HD), in some cases associated with repeat lengths below the edge of 36 CAG repeats. The study describes the clinical and genetic features of four patients who were followed over several years. Patients belonged to an inbred family in whom progressive chorea, manifesting predominantly with dystonia and cerebellar features, developed during middle age. Although severe psychiatric symptoms ultimately developed in two of the four patients, cognitive function remained reasonably well preserved in all of them even after several disease years. Moderate cognitive deficits were limited to the visuomotor organization and abstract thinking subtests in three of the four patients. Qualitative brain imaging showed atrophy of brain predominantly involving cortex and cerebellum. Genetic testing revealed a variable mutation penetrance among family members, some affected members showing an upper allele size ranging from 34 to 49, whereas others remained unaffected despite the presence of the full mutation beyond 40 CAG repeats. Co-morbidity with recessive hereditary inclusion body myopathy was found in two subjects from one family. Although the main diagnosis of HD remains to be confirmed by further neuropathological studies, these cases may suggest that HD could manifest with as few as 34 CAG repeats, in some geographic areas, the disease phenotype most probably being influenced by additional, as yet unidentified, genes.

  1. Cognitive and behavioral changes in Huntington disease before diagnosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paulsen, Jane S; Miller, Amanda C; Hayes, Terry; Shaw, Emily

    2017-01-01

    Phenotypic manifestations of Huntington disease (HD) can be detected at least 15 years prior to the time when a motor diagnosis is given. Advances in clinical care and future research will require consistent use of HD definitions and HD premanifest (prodromal) stages being used across clinics, sites, and countries. Cognitive and behavioral (psychiatric) changes in HD are summarized and implications for ongoing advancement in our knowledge of prodromal HD are suggested. The earliest detected cognitive changes are observed in the Symbol Digit Modalities Test, Stroop Interference, Stroop Color and Word Test-interference condition, and Trail Making Test. Cognitive changes in the middle and near motor diagnostic stages of prodromal HD involve nearly every cognitive test administered and the greatest changes over time (i.e., slopes) are found in those prodromal HD participants who are nearest to motor diagnosis. Psychiatric changes demonstrate significant worsening over time and remain elevated compared with healthy controls throughout the prodromal disease course. Psychiatric and behavior changes in prodromal HD are much lower than that obtained using cognitive assessment, although the psychiatric and behavioral changes represent symptoms most debilitating to independent capacity and wellness. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. A fully humanized transgenic mouse model of Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Southwell, Amber L; Warby, Simon C; Carroll, Jeffrey B; Doty, Crystal N; Skotte, Niels H; Zhang, Weining; Villanueva, Erika B; Kovalik, Vlad; Xie, Yuanyun; Pouladi, Mahmoud A; Collins, Jennifer A; Yang, X William; Franciosi, Sonia; Hayden, Michael R

    2013-01-01

    Silencing the mutant huntingtin gene (muHTT) is a direct and simple therapeutic strategy for the treatment of Huntington disease (HD) in principle. However, targeting the HD mutation presents challenges because it is an expansion of a common genetic element (a CAG tract) that is found throughout the genome. Moreover, the HTT protein is important for neuronal health throughout life, and silencing strategies that also reduce the wild-type HTT allele may not be well tolerated during the long-term treatment of HD. Several HTT silencing strategies are in development that target genetic sites in HTT that are outside of the CAG expansion, including HD mutation-linked single-nucleotide polymorphisms and the HTT promoter. Preclinical testing of these genetic therapies has required the development of a new mouse model of HD that carries these human-specific genetic targets. To generate a fully humanized mouse model of HD, we have cross-bred BACHD and YAC18 on the Hdh(-/-) background. The resulting line, Hu97/18, is the first murine model of HD that fully genetically recapitulates human HD having two human HTT genes, no mouse Hdh genes and heterozygosity of the HD mutation. We find that Hu97/18 mice display many of the behavioral changes associated with HD including motor, psychiatric and cognitive deficits, as well as canonical neuropathological abnormalities. This mouse line will be useful for gaining additional insights into the disease mechanisms of HD as well as for testing genetic therapies targeting human HTT.

  3. Cognitive decline in Huntington's disease expansion gene carriers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baake, Verena; Reijntjes, Robert H A M; Dumas, Eve M; Thompson, Jennifer C; Roos, Raymund A C

    2017-10-01

    In Huntington's Disease (HD) cognitive decline can occur before unequivocal motor signs become apparent. As cognitive decline often starts early in the course of the disease and has a progressive nature over time, cognition can be regarded as a key target for symptomatic treatment. The specific progressive profile of cognitive decline over time is unknown. The aim of this study is to quantify the progression of cognitive decline across all HD stages, from pre-motormanifest to advanced HD, and to investigate if CAG length mediates cognitive decline. In the European REGISTRY study 2669 HD expansion gene carriers underwent annual cognitive assessment. General linear mixed models were used to model the cognitive decline for each cognitive task across all disease stages. Additionally, a model was developed to evaluate the cognitive decline based on CAG length and age rather than disease stage. There was significant cognitive decline on all administered tasks throughout pre-motormanifest (close to estimated disease onset) participants and the subsequent motormanifest participants from stage 1 to stage 4. Performance on the Stroop Word and Stroop Color tests additionally declined significantly across the two pre-motormanifest groups: far and close to estimated disease onset. The evaluation of cognition performance in relation to CAG length and age revealed a more rapid cognitive decline in participants with longer CAG length than participants with shorter CAG length over time. Cognitive performance already shows decline in pre-motormanifest HD gene expansion carriers and gradually worsens to late stage HD. HD gene expansion carriers with certain CAG length have their own cognitive profile, i.e., longer CAG length is associated with more rapid decline. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Huntington disease skeletal muscle is hyperexcitable owing to chloride and potassium channel dysfunction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waters, Christopher W; Varuzhanyan, Grigor; Talmadge, Robert J; Voss, Andrew A

    2013-05-28

    Huntington disease is a progressive and fatal genetic disorder with debilitating motor and cognitive defects. Chorea, rigidity, dystonia, and muscle weakness are characteristic motor defects of the disease that are commonly attributed to central neurodegeneration. However, no previous study has examined the membrane properties that control contraction in Huntington disease muscle. We show primary defects in ex vivo adult skeletal muscle from the R6/2 transgenic mouse model of Huntington disease. Action potentials in diseased fibers are more easily triggered and prolonged than in fibers from WT littermates. Furthermore, some action potentials in the diseased fibers self-trigger. These defects occur because of decreases in the resting chloride and potassium conductances. Consistent with this, the expression of the muscle chloride channel, ClC-1, in Huntington disease muscle was compromised by improper splicing and a corresponding reduction in total Clcn1 (gene for ClC-1) mRNA. Additionally, the total Kcnj2 (gene for the Kir2.1 potassium channel) mRNA was reduced in disease muscle. The resulting muscle hyperexcitability causes involuntary and prolonged contractions that may contribute to the chorea, rigidity, and dystonia that characterize Huntington disease.

  5. Sleep-related modifications of EEG connectivity in the sensory-motor networks in Huntington Disease: An eLORETA study and review of the literature.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piano, Carla; Imperatori, Claudio; Losurdo, Anna; Bentivoglio, Anna Rita; Cortelli, Pietro; Della Marca, Giacomo

    2017-07-01

    To evaluate EEG functional connectivity in the sensory-motor network, during wake and sleep, in patients with Huntington Disease (HD). 23 patients with HD and 23 age- and sex-matched healthy controls were enrolled. EEG connectivity analysis was performed by means of exact Low Resolution Electric Tomography (eLORETA). In wake, HD patients showed an increase of delta lagged phase synchronization (T=3.60; pHuntington's Disease, and to define therapeutically strategies. Copyright © 2016 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Editing for an AMPA receptor subunit RNA in prefrontal cortex and striatum in Alzheimer's disease, Huntington's disease and schizophrenia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akbarian, S.; Smith, M. A.; Jones, E. G.; Bloom, F. E. (Principal Investigator)

    1995-01-01

    Animal studies and cell culture experiments demonstrated that posttranscriptional editing of the transcript of the GluR-2 gene, resulting in substitution of an arginine for glutamine in the second transmembrane region (TM II) of the expressed protein, is associated with a reduction in Ca2+ permeability of the receptor channel. Thus, disturbances in GluR-2 RNA editing with alteration of intracellular Ca2+ homeostasis could lead to neuronal dysfunction and even neuronal degeneration. The present study determined the proportions of edited and unedited GluR-2 RNA in the prefrontal cortex of brains from patients with Alzheimer's disease, in the striatum of brains from patients with Huntington's disease, and in the same areas of brains from age-matched schizophrenics and controls, by using reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction, restriction endonuclease digestion, gel electrophoresis and scintillation radiometry. In the prefrontal cortex of controls, 99.9% were edited; in the prefrontal cortex both of schizophrenics and of Alzheimer's patients approximately 1.0% of all GluR-2 RNA molecules were unedited and 99% were edited. In the striatum of controls and of schizophrenics, approximately 0.5% of GluR-2 RNA molecules were unedited and 99.5% were edited; in the striatum of Huntington's patients nearly 5.0% of GluR-2 RNA was unedited. In the prefrontal white matter of controls, approximately 7.0% of GluR-2 RNA was unedited. In the normal human prefrontal cortex and striatum, the large majority of GluR-2 RNA molecules contains a CGG codon for arginine in the TMII coding region; this implies that the corresponding AMPA receptors have a low Ca2+ permeability, as previously demonstrated for the rat brain. The process of GluR-2 RNA editing is compromised in a region-specific manner in schizophrenia, in Alzheimer's disease and Huntington's Chorea although in each of these disorders there is still a large excess of edited GluR-2 RNA molecules. Disturbances of GluR-2 RNA

  7. Gene suppression strategies for dominantly inherited neurodegenerative diseases: lessons from Huntington's disease and spinocerebellar ataxia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keiser, Megan S; Kordasiewicz, Holly B; McBride, Jodi L

    2016-04-15

    RNA-targeting approaches are emerging as viable therapeutics that offer an alternative method to modulate traditionally 'undrugable' targets. In the case of dominantly inherited neurodegenerative diseases, gene suppression strategies can target the underlying cause of these intractable disorders. Polyglutamine diseases are caused by CAG expansions in discrete genes, making them ideal candidates for gene suppression therapies. Here, we discuss the current state of gene suppression approaches for Huntington's disease and the spinocerebellar ataxias, including the use of antisense oligonucleotides, short-interfering RNAs, as well as viral vector-mediated delivery of short hairpin RNAs and artificial microRNAs. We focus on lessons learned from preclinical studies investigating gene suppression therapies for these disorders, particularly in rodent models of disease and in non-human primates. In animal models, recent advances in gene suppression technologies have not only prevented disease progression in a number of cases, but have also reversed existing disease, providing evidence that reducing the expression of disease-causing genes may be of benefit in symptomatic patients. Both allele- and non-allele-specific approaches to gene suppression have made great strides over the past decade, showing efficacy and safety in both small and large animal models. Advances in delivery techniques allow for broad and durable suppression of target genes, have been validated in non-human primates and in some cases, are currently being evaluated in human patients. Finally, we discuss the challenges of developing and delivering gene suppression constructs into the CNS and recent advances of potential therapeutics into the clinic. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  8. HTT-lowering reverses Huntington's disease immune dysfunction caused by NFκB pathway dysregulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Träger, Ulrike; Andre, Ralph; Lahiri, Nayana; Magnusson-Lind, Anna; Weiss, Andreas; Grueninger, Stephan; McKinnon, Chris; Sirinathsinghji, Eva; Kahlon, Shira; Pfister, Edith L; Moser, Roger; Hummerich, Holger; Antoniou, Michael; Bates, Gillian P; Luthi-Carter, Ruth; Lowdell, Mark W; Björkqvist, Maria; Ostroff, Gary R; Aronin, Neil; Tabrizi, Sarah J

    2014-03-01

    Huntington's disease is an inherited neurodegenerative disorder caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the huntingtin gene. The peripheral innate immune system contributes to Huntington's disease pathogenesis and has been targeted successfully to modulate disease progression, but mechanistic understanding relating this to mutant huntingtin expression in immune cells has been lacking. Here we demonstrate that human Huntington's disease myeloid cells produce excessive inflammatory cytokines as a result of the cell-intrinsic effects of mutant huntingtin expression. A direct effect of mutant huntingtin on the NFκB pathway, whereby it interacts with IKKγ, leads to increased degradation of IκB and subsequent nuclear translocation of RelA. Transcriptional alterations in intracellular immune signalling pathways are also observed. Using a novel method of small interfering RNA delivery to lower huntingtin expression, we show reversal of disease-associated alterations in cellular function-the first time this has been demonstrated in primary human cells. Glucan-encapsulated small interfering RNA particles were used to lower huntingtin levels in human Huntington's disease monocytes/macrophages, resulting in a reversal of huntingtin-induced elevated cytokine production and transcriptional changes. These findings improve our understanding of the role of innate immunity in neurodegeneration, introduce glucan-encapsulated small interfering RNA particles as tool for studying cellular pathogenesis ex vivo in human cells and raise the prospect of immune cell-directed HTT-lowering as a therapeutic in Huntington's disease.

  9. Hereditary chorea - what else to consider when the Huntington's disease genetics test is negative?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malek, N; Newman, E J

    2017-01-01

    Chorea, cognitive, behavioural and psychiatric disturbance occur in varying combinations in Huntington's disease (HD). This is often easy to recognise particularly in the presence of an autosomal dominant history. Whilst HD may be the most common aetiology of such a presentation, several HD phenocopies should be considered if genetic testing for HD is negative. We searched PubMed and the Cochrane Database from January 1, 1946 up to January 1, 2016, combining the search terms: 'chorea', 'Huntington's disease', 'HDL' and 'phenocopies'. HD phenocopies frequently display additional movement disorders such as myoclonus, dystonia, parkinsonism and tics. Here, we discuss the phenotypes, and investigations of HD-like disorders where the combination of progressive chorea and cognitive impairment is obvious, but HD gene test result is negative. Conditions presenting with sudden onset chorea such as vascular, infectious and autoimmune causes are not the primary focus of our discussion, but we will make a passing reference to these as some of these conditions are potentially treatable. Hereditary forms of chorea are a heterogeneous group of conditions and this number is increasing. While most of these conditions are not curable, molecular genetic testing has enabled many of these disorders to be distinguished from HD. Getting a precise diagnosis may enable patients and their families to better understand the nature of their condition. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. Fall risk assessment using the Tinetti mobility test in individuals with Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kloos, Anne D; Kegelmeyer, Deb A; Young, Gregory S; Kostyk, Sandra K

    2010-12-15

    The Tinetti Mobility Test (TMT) is a clinical balance and gait test that predicts fall risk in the elderly. This study examined the concurrent validity, usefulness of the TMT as a fall risk screening tool, and the potential ability of the TMT to predict falls in individuals with Huntington's disease (HD). Data from a retrospective review of 94 patient records were used. TMT scores were correlated with Unified Huntington Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS) motor scores. The ability of the TMT to accurately assess fall risk was determined using validity index measures. Logistic regression was used to assess the ability of the TMT to predict falls. TMT scores correlated with UHDRS motor scores (r(s) = -0.751, P < 0.0001). Using a cutoff value of 21, the TMT had a sensitivity of 74% and a specificity of 60% to identify fallers. Lower TMT scores and younger age were significant predictors of falls. The TMT is a valid tool for assessing balance and gait status and fall risk of individuals with HD. © 2010 Movement Disorder Society.

  11. Diagnosis, psychiatry and neurology: the case of Huntington Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halpin, Michael

    2011-09-01

    Although Huntington Disease (HD) is recognized as a neurological condition, it has a number of psychiatric effects, with recent studies suggesting that these effects can appear years prior to the telltale neurological symptoms. This trajectory has, in part, led to the misdiagnosis of HD as a psychiatric illness, as explicated in numerous case studies. This paper utilizes HD as a case study to investigate the social consequences of diagnosis by highlighting the tensions and ambiguities between neurology and psychiatry, while also discussing the difficulties that HD creates for psychiatry's diagnostic schema. Findings are based on 30 in-depth interviews conducted with both individuals with HD and informal caregivers (e.g., spouses) in British Columbia, Canada. The findings address numerous instances of misdiagnosis and the resulting negative impacts for individual health and well-being. The findings are further discussed in relation to the work of Bakhtin and Latour, with suggestions presented to ameliorate such misdiagnoses. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Non-Verbal and Verbal Fluency in Prodromal Huntington's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robins Wahlin, Tarja-Brita; Luszcz, Mary A; Wahlin, Åke; Byrne, Gerard J

    2015-01-01

    This study examines non-verbal (design) and verbal (phonemic and semantic) fluency in prodromal Huntington's disease (HD). An accumulating body of research indicates subtle deficits in cognitive functioning among prodromal mutation carriers for HD. Performance was compared between 32 mutation carriers and 38 non-carriers in order to examine the magnitude of impairment across fluency tasks. The predicted years to onset (PYTO) in mutation carriers was calculated by a regression equation and used to divide the group according to whether onset was predicted as less than 12.75 years (HD+CLOSE; n = 16) or greater than 12.75 years (HD+DISTANT; n = 16). The results indicate that both non-verbal and verbal fluency is sensitive to subtle impairment in prodromal HD. HD+CLOSE group produced fewer items in all assessed fluency tasks compared to non-carriers. HD+DISTANT produced fewer drawings than non-carriers in the non-verbal task. PYTO correlated significantly with all measures of non-verbal and verbal fluency. The pattern of results indicates that subtle cognitive deficits exist in prodromal HD, and that less structured tasks with high executive demands are the most sensitive in detecting divergence from the normal range of functioning. These selective impairments can be attributed to the early involvement of frontostriatal circuitry and frontal lobes.

  13. Association between caffeine intake and age at onset in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simonin, Clémence; Duru, Cécile; Salleron, Julia; Hincker, Pascale; Charles, Perrine; Delval, Arnaud; Youssov, Katia; Burnouf, Sylvie; Azulay, Jean-Philippe; Verny, Christophe; Scherer, Clarisse; Tranchant, Christine; Goizet, Cyril; Debruxelles, Sabrina; Defebvre, Luc; Sablonnière, Bernard; Romon-Rousseaux, Monique; Buée, Luc; Destée, Alain; Godefroy, Olivier; Dürr, Alexandra; Landwehrmeyer, Bernhard; Bachoud-Levi, Anne-Catherine; Richard, Florence; Blum, David; Krystkowiak, Pierre

    2013-10-01

    Habitual consumption of caffeine, a non-selective adenosine receptor (AR) antagonist, has been suggested to be beneficial in Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases. Experimental evidence support that ARs play a role in Huntington's disease (HD) raising the hypothesis that caffeine may be a life-style modifier in HD. To determine a possible relationship between caffeine consumption and age at onset (AAO) in HD, we retrospectively assessed caffeine consumption in 80 HD patients using a dietary survey and determined relationship with AAO. Following adjustment for gender, smoking status and CAG repeat length, caffeine consumption greater than 190mg/day was significantly associated with an earlier AAO. These data support an association between habitual caffeine intake and AAO in HD patients, but further studies are warranted to understand the link between these variables. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Therapeutic strategies for circadian rhythm and sleep disturbances in Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Wamelen, Daniel J; Roos, Raymund Ac; Aziz, Nasir A

    2015-12-01

    Aside from the well-known motor, cognitive and psychiatric signs and symptoms, Huntington disease (HD) is also frequently complicated by circadian rhythm and sleep disturbances. Despite the observation that these disturbances often precede motor onset and have a high prevalence, no studies are available in HD patients which assess potential treatments. In this review, we will briefly outline the nature of circadian rhythm and sleep disturbances in HD and subsequently focus on potential treatments based on findings in other neurodegenerative diseases with similarities to HD, such as Parkinson and Alzheimer disease. The most promising treatment options to date for circadian rhythm and sleep disruption in HD include melatonin (agonists) and bright light therapy, although further corroboration in clinical trials is warranted.

  15. Glucose transportation in the brain and its impairment in Huntington disease: one more shade of the energetic metabolism failure?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morea, Veronica; Bidollari, Eris; Colotti, Gianni; Fiorillo, Annarita; Rosati, Jessica; De Filippis, Lidia; Squitieri, Ferdinando; Ilari, Andrea

    2017-07-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) or Huntington's chorea is the most common inherited, dominantly transmitted, neurodegenerative disorder. It is caused by increased CAG repeats number in the gene coding for huntingtin (Htt) and characterized by motor, behaviour and psychiatric symptoms, ultimately leading to death. HD patients also exhibit alterations in glucose and energetic metabolism, which result in pronounced weight loss despite sustained calorie intake. Glucose metabolism decreases in the striatum of all the subjects with mutated Htt, but affects symptom presentation only when it drops below a specific threshold. Recent evidence points at defects in glucose uptake by the brain, and especially by neurons, as a relevant component of central glucose hypometabolism in HD patients. Here we review the main features of glucose metabolism and transport in the brain in physiological conditions and how these processes are impaired in HD, and discuss the potential ability of strategies aimed at increasing intracellular energy levels to counteract neurological and motor degeneration in HD patients.

  16. Early energy deficit in Huntington disease: identification of a plasma biomarker traceable during disease progression.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fanny Mochel

    Full Text Available Huntington disease (HD is a fatal neurodegenerative disorder, with no effective treatment. The pathogenic mechanisms underlying HD has not been elucidated, but weight loss, associated with chorea and cognitive decline, is a characteristic feature of the disease that is accessible to investigation. We, therefore, performed a multiparametric study exploring body weight and the mechanisms of its loss in 32 presymptomatic carriers and HD patients in the early stages of the disease, compared to 21 controls. We combined this study with a multivariate statistical analysis of plasma components quantified by proton nuclear magnetic resonance ((1H NMR spectroscopy. We report evidence of an early hypermetabolic state in HD. Weight loss was observed in the HD group even in presymptomatic carriers, although their caloric intake was higher than that of controls. Inflammatory processes and primary hormonal dysfunction were excluded. (1H NMR spectroscopy on plasma did, however, distinguish HD patients at different stages of the disease and presymptomatic carriers from controls. This distinction was attributable to low levels of the branched chain amino acids (BCAA, valine, leucine and isoleucine. BCAA levels were correlated with weight loss and, importantly, with disease progression and abnormal triplet repeat expansion size in the HD1 gene. Levels of IGF1, which is regulated by BCAA, were also significantly lower in the HD group. Therefore, early weight loss in HD is associated with a systemic metabolic defect, and BCAA levels may be used as a biomarker, indicative of disease onset and early progression. The decreased plasma levels of BCAA may correspond to a critical need for Krebs cycle energy substrates in the brain that increased metabolism in the periphery is trying to provide.

  17. Juvenile Huntington's disease confirmed by genetic examination in twins Doença de Huntington juvenil confirmada por exame genético em gêmeas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    GILBERTO LEVY

    1999-09-01

    Full Text Available Early-onset Huntington's disease (HD occurs in approximately 10% of HD's cases. We report juvenile HD in phenotypically identical twins, evaluated by history, clinical and neurologic examination, mini-mental state examination, blood laboratory exams, cerebrospinal fluid examination, skull computed tomography, and genetic examination for HD. Patients had the akinetic-rigid variety (Westphal variant of the disease and paternal inheritance. The laboratory workup confirmed the clinical diagnosis of HD, which adds this report to the rare cases of HD in twins reported in the literature.Doença de Huntington (DH de início precoce ocorre em aproximadamente 10% dos casos de DH. Relatamos DH juvenil em gêmeas fenotipicamente idênticas, avaliadas por história, exames clínico e neurológico, mini-exame do estado mental, exames de sangue, exame do líquido cefalorraquidiano, tomografia computadorizada de crânio e exame genético para DH. As pacientes apresentavam a variedade rígido-acinética (variante de Westphal da doença e herança paterna. A avaliação laboratorial confirmou o diagnóstico clínico de DH, acrescentando-se este relato aos raros casos de DH em gêmeos relatados na literatura.

  18. Normal and mutant HTT interact to affect clinical severity and progression in Huntington disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Aziz, N A; Jurgens, C K; Landwehrmeyer, G B

    2009-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: Huntington disease (HD) is an autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disorder caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the HD gene (HTT). We aimed to assess whether interaction between CAG repeat sizes in the mutant and normal allele could affect disease severity and progression. METHODS: Using...... with less severe symptoms and pathology. CONCLUSIONS: Increasing CAG repeat size in normal HTT diminishes the association between mutant CAG repeat size and disease severity and progression in Huntington disease. The underlying mechanism may involve interaction of the polyglutamine domains of normal...

  19. Current status of PET imaging in Huntington's disease

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pagano, Gennaro; Niccolini, Flavia; Politis, Marios [King' s College London, Neurodegeneration Imaging Group, Department of Basic and Clinical Neuroscience, Maurice Wohl Clinical Neuroscience Institute, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience (IoPPN), Camberwell, London (United Kingdom)

    2016-06-15

    To review the developments of recent decades and the current status of PET molecular imaging in Huntington's disease (HD). A systematic review of PET studies in HD was performed. The MEDLINE, Web of Science, Cochrane and Scopus databases were searched for articles in all languages published up to 19 August 2015 using the major medical subject heading ''Huntington Disease'' combined with text and key words ''Huntington Disease'', ''Neuroimaging'' and ''PET''. Only peer-reviewed, primary research studies in HD patients and premanifest HD carriers, and studies in which clinical features were described in association with PET neuroimaging results, were included in this review. Reviews, case reports and nonhuman studies were excluded. A total of 54 PET studies were identified and analysed in this review. Brain metabolism ([{sup 18}F]FDG and [{sup 15}O]H{sub 2}O), presynaptic ([{sup 18}F]fluorodopa, [{sup 11}C]β-CIT and [{sup 11}C]DTBZ) and postsynaptic ([{sup 11}C]SCH22390, [{sup 11}C]FLB457 and [{sup 11}C]raclopride) dopaminergic function, phosphodiesterases ([{sup 18}F]JNJ42259152, [{sup 18}F]MNI-659 and [{sup 11}C]IMA107), and adenosine ([{sup 18}F]CPFPX), cannabinoid ([{sup 18}F]MK-9470), opioid ([{sup 11}C]diprenorphine) and GABA ([{sup 11}C]flumazenil) receptors were evaluated as potential biomarkers for monitoring disease progression and for assessing the development and efficacy of novel disease-modifying drugs in premanifest HD carriers and HD patients. PET studies evaluating brain restoration and neuroprotection were also identified and described in detail. Brain metabolism, postsynaptic dopaminergic function and phosphodiesterase 10A levels were proven to be powerful in assessing disease progression. However, no single technique may be currently considered an optimal biomarker and an integrative multimodal imaging approach combining different techniques should be developed

  20. Muscle atrophy is associated with cervical spinal motoneuron loss in BACHD mouse model for Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valadão, Priscila Aparecida Costa; de Aragão, Bárbara Campos; Andrade, Jéssica Neves; Magalhães-Gomes, Matheus Proença S; Foureaux, Giselle; Joviano-Santos, Julliane Vasconcelos; Nogueira, José Carlos; Ribeiro, Fabíola Mara; Tapia, Juan Carlos; Guatimosim, Cristina

    2017-03-01

    Involuntary choreiform movements are clinical hallmark of Huntington's disease, an autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disorder caused by an increased number of CAG trinucleotide repeats in the huntingtin gene. Involuntary movements start with an impairment of facial muscles and then affect trunk and limbs muscles. Huntington's disease symptoms are caused by changes in cortex and striatum neurons induced by mutated huntingtin protein. However, little is known about the impact of this abnormal protein in spinal cord motoneurons that control movement. Therefore, in this study we evaluated abnormalities in the motor unit (spinal cervical motoneurons, motor axons, neuromuscular junctions and muscle) in a mouse model for Huntington's disease (BACHD). Using light, fluorescence, confocal, and electron microscopy, we showed significant changes such as muscle fibers atrophy, fragmentation of neuromuscular junctions, axonal alterations, and motoneurons death in BACHD mice. Noteworthy, the surviving motoneurons from BACHD spinal cords were smaller than WT. We suggest that this loss of larger putative motoneurons is accompanied by a decrease in the expression of fast glycolytic muscle fibers in this model for Huntington's disease. These observations show spinal cord motoneurons loss in BACHD that might help to understand neuromuscular changes in Huntington's disease. © 2016 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  1. A SNP in the HTT promoter alters NF-κB binding and is a bidirectional genetic modifier of Huntington disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bečanović, Kristina; Nørremølle, Anne; Neal, Scott J

    2015-01-01

    Cis-regulatory variants that alter gene expression can modify disease expressivity, but none have previously been identified in Huntington disease (HD). Here we provide in vivo evidence in HD patients that cis-regulatory variants in the HTT promoter are bidirectional modifiers of HD age of onset...

  2. Sleep deficits but no metabolic deficits in premanifest Huntington's disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panin, Francesca; Goodman, Anna O. G.; Lazic, Stanley E.; Lazar, Zsolt I.; Mason, Sarah L.; Rogers, Lorraine; Murgatroyd, Peter R.; Watson, Laura P. E.; Singh, Priya; Borowsky, Beth; Shneerson, John M.; Barker, Roger A.

    2015-01-01

    Objective Huntington disease (HD) is a fatal autosomal dominant, neurodegenerative condition characterized by progressively worsening motor and nonmotor problems including cognitive and neuropsychiatric disturbances, along with sleep abnormalities and weight loss. However, it is not known whether sleep disturbances and metabolic abnormalities underlying the weight loss are present at a premanifest stage. Methods We performed a comprehensive sleep and metabolic study in 38 premanifest gene carrier individuals and 36 age‐ and sex‐matched controls. The study consisted of 2 weeks of actigraphy at home, 2 nights of polysomnography and multiple sleep latency tests in the laboratory, and body composition assessment using dual energy x‐ray absorptiometry scanning with energy expenditure measured over 10 days at home by doubly labeled water and for 36 hours in the laboratory by indirect calorimetry along with detailed cognitive and clinical assessments. We performed a principal component analyses across all measures within each studied domain. Results Compared to controls, premanifest gene carriers had more disrupted sleep, which was best characterized by a fragmented sleep profile. These abnormalities, as well as a theta power (4–7Hz) decrease in rapid eye movement sleep, were associated with disease burden score. Objectively measured sleep problems coincided with the development of cognitive, affective, and subtle motor deficits and were not associated with any metabolic alterations. Interpretation The results show that among the earliest abnormalities in premanifest HD is sleep disturbances. This raises questions as to where the pathology in HD begins and also whether it could drive some of the early features and even possibly the pathology. Ann Neurol 2015;78:630–648 PMID:26224419

  3. Alterations in mRNA 3' UTR Isoform Abundance Accompany Gene Expression Changes in Human Huntington's Disease Brains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romo, Lindsay; Ashar-Patel, Ami; Pfister, Edith; Aronin, Neil

    2017-09-26

    The huntingtin gene has two mRNA isoforms that differ in their 3' UTR length. The relationship of these isoforms with Huntington's disease is not established. We provide evidence that the abundance of huntingtin 3' UTR isoforms differs between patient and control neural stem cells, fibroblasts, motor cortex, and cerebellum. Huntingtin 3' UTR isoforms, including a mid-3' UTR isoform, have different localizations, half-lives, polyA tail lengths, microRNA sites, and RNA-binding protein sites. Isoform shifts in Huntington's disease motor cortex are not limited to huntingtin; 11% of alternatively polyadenylated genes change the abundance of their 3' UTR isoforms. Altered expression of RNA-binding proteins may be associated with aberrant isoform abundance; knockdown of the RNA-binding protein CNOT6 in control fibroblasts leads to huntingtin isoform differences similar to those in disease fibroblasts. These findings demonstrate that mRNA 3' UTR isoform changes are a feature of molecular pathology in the Huntington's disease brain. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. The neural substrates of script knowledge deficits as revealed by a PET study in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allain, Philippe; Gaura, Véronique; Fasotti, Luciano; Chauviré, Valérie; Prundean, Adriana; Sherer-Gagou, Clarisse; Bonneau, Dominique; Bachoud-Levi, Anne-Catherine; Dubas, Frédéric; Remy, Philippe; Le Gall, Didier; Verny, Christophe

    2011-07-01

    Previous neuropsychological investigations have suggested that both the prefrontal cortex and the basal ganglia are involved in the management of script event knowledge required in planning behavior. This study was designated to map, the correlations between resting-state brain glucose utilization as measured by FDG-PET (positron emission tomography) and scores obtained by means of a series of script generation and script sorting tasks in 8 patients with early Huntington's disease. These patients exhibited a selectively greater impairment for the organizational aspects of scripts compared to the semantic aspects of scripts. We showed significant negative correlations between the number of sequencing, boundary, perseverative and intrusion errors and the metabolism of several cortical regions, not only including frontal, but also posterior regions. Our findings suggest that, within the fronto-striatal system, the cortical frontal regions are more crucial in script retrieval and script sequencing than the basal ganglia. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Social Cognition, Executive Functions and Self-Report of Psychological Distress in Huntington's Disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Ida Unmack; Vinther-Jensen, Tua; Nielsen, Jørgen Erik

    2016-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: Huntington's disease (HD) is characterized by motor symptoms, psychiatric symptoms and cognitive impairment in, inter alia, executive functions and social cognition. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between subjective feeling of psychological distress using...... a self-report questionnaire and performances on tests of executive functions and social cognition in a large consecutive cohort of HD patients. METHOD: 50 manifest HD patients were tested in social cognition and executive functions and each answered a self-report questionnaire about current status...... psychological distress was significantly associated with worse performances on social cognitive tests (mean absolute correlation .34) and that there were no significant correlations between perceived psychological distress and performance on tests of executive functions. The correlations between perceived...

  6. Widespread heterogeneous neuronal loss across the cerebral cortex in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nana, Alissa L; Kim, Eric H; Thu, Doris C V; Oorschot, Dorothy E; Tippett, Lynette J; Hogg, Virginia M; Synek, Beth J; Roxburgh, Richard; Waldvogel, Henry J; Faull, Richard L M

    2014-01-01

    Huntington's disease is an autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disease characterized by neuronal degeneration in the basal ganglia and cerebral cortex, and a variable symptom profile. Although progressive striatal degeneration is known to occur and is related to symptom profile, little is known about the cellular basis of symptom heterogeneity across the entire cerebral cortex. To investigate this, we have undertaken a double blind study using unbiased stereological cell counting techniques to determine the pattern of cell loss in six representative cortical regions from the frontal, parietal, temporal, and occipital lobes in the brains of 14 Huntington's disease cases and 15 controls. The results clearly demonstrate a widespread loss of total neurons and pyramidal cells across all cortical regions studied, except for the primary visual cortex. Importantly, the results show that cell loss is remarkably variable both within and between Huntington's disease cases. The results also show that neuronal loss in the primary sensory and secondary visual cortices relate to Huntington's disease motor symptom profiles, and neuronal loss across the associational cortices in the frontal, parietal and temporal lobes is related to both Huntington's disease motor and to mood symptom profiles. This finding considerably extends a previous study (Thu et al., Brain, 2010; 133:1094-1110) which showed that neuronal loss in the primary motor cortex was related specifically to the motor symptom profiles while neuronal loss in the anterior cingulate cortex was related specifically to mood symptom profiles. The extent of cortical cell loss in the current study was generally related to the striatal neuropathological grade, but not to CAG repeat length on the HTT gene. Overall our findings show that Huntington's disease is characterized by a heterogeneous pattern of neuronal cell loss across the entire cerebrum which varies with symptom profile.

  7. Exercise testing and training in people with Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dawes, H; Collett, J; Debono, K; Quinn, L; Jones, K; Kelson, M J; Simpson, S A; Playle, R; Backx, K; Wasley, D; Nemeth, A H; Rosser, A; Izardi, H; Busse, M

    2015-02-01

    To explore exercise response in people with Huntington's disease (HD). Experimental observational study with a randomly allocated subgroup before/after interventional study. Community. People with HD (n=30) and a healthy comparator group (n=20). Thirteen people from the HD group were randomly allocated to an exercise training program. Heart rate (HR) and perceived exertion on the Borg-CR10 scale (RPE) during a submaximal cycle ergometer exercise test (three minute unloaded and nine minute 65%-75%HRmaximum phase). Expired air and lactate measures were available for 8 people with HD during the exercise. A 12 week gym and home walking exercise programme (n=13). People with HD achieved a lower work rate at nine minutes (82±42(0-195) v 107±35(50 -185) Watts (phealthy group and did not achieve a steady state HR during unloaded cycling. People with HD also demonstrated higher than expected lactate at three 2.5±2.5(1.1-8)mmo.L-1 and nine 3.8±1.9(1.2-6.6)mmo.L-1 minutes and respiratory exchange ratio at three 0.78±0.03 (0.74-0.81) and nine minutes 0.94±0.11(0.81-1.15). After exercise training there were no changes observed in HR or RPE responses during the exercise test. There was a large variability in the observed metabolic and physiological responses to exercise in people with HD. The observed exercise responses suggest that altered exercise prescription parameters may be required for people with HD and that exercise response and factors' affecting this requires further investigation. © The Author(s) 2014.

  8. Predictive testing for Huntington disease in a developing country.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Futter, M J; Heckmann, J M; Greenberg, L J

    2009-01-01

    Predictive testing for Huntington disease (HD), by means of direct mutation analysis, has been offered at the Division of Human Genetics, University of Cape Town, from 1995. The aim of this study was to compile a comprehensive profile of the participants who had undergone predictive testing in the Western Cape from 1995 to 2005. The sociodemographic data, uptake and outcome of tests were analyzed to inform changes to improve the current genetic counseling services. A retrospective cross-sectional design using a 'multi-method' approach of both qualitative and quantitative methods was used. Data were gathered from the participants' hospital files and genetic database. Psychosocial data were obtained by face-to-face interviews with the participants in their homes or venues of choice. A total of 36 predictive tests were performed. The uptake for predictive testing was approximately 4.5% of the estimated at-risk population. The cohort of 27 individuals comprised 16 females and 11 males. Their mean age was 35.3 years; 6 were mixed ancestry and 21 were White people (European ancestry); 11 tested gene positive, 15 gene negative and 1 was in the reduced penetrance range. The most important issue identified was that the uptake of individuals classified as mixed ancestry was substantially lower than that of the White people possibly due to limited access to the predictive testing program because of the low levels of income and education in the general population of families with HD. Strategies to address these aspects have been incorporated into the program and will be reassessed after 1 year.

  9. Prefrontal cortex white matter tracts in prodromal Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matsui, Joy T; Vaidya, Jatin G; Wassermann, Demian; Kim, Regina Eunyoung; Magnotta, Vincent A; Johnson, Hans J; Paulsen, Jane S

    2015-10-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is most widely known for its selective degeneration of striatal neurons but there is also growing evidence for white matter (WM) deterioration. The primary objective of this research was to conduct a large-scale analysis using multisite diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) tractography data to quantify diffusivity properties along major prefrontal cortex WM tracts in prodromal HD. Fifteen international sites participating in the PREDICT-HD study collected imaging and neuropsychological data on gene-positive HD participants without a clinical diagnosis (i.e., prodromal) and gene-negative control participants. The anatomical prefrontal WM tracts of the corpus callosum (PFCC), anterior thalamic radiations (ATRs), inferior fronto-occipital fasciculi (IFO), and uncinate fasciculi (UNC) were identified using streamline tractography of DWI. Within each of these tracts, tensor scalars for fractional anisotropy, mean diffusivity, radial diffusivity, and axial diffusivity coefficients were calculated. We divided prodromal HD subjects into three CAG-age product (CAP) groups having Low, Medium, or High probabilities of onset indexed by genetic exposure. We observed significant differences in WM properties for each of the four anatomical tracts for the High CAP group in comparison to controls. Additionally, the Medium CAP group presented differences in the ATR and IFO in comparison to controls. Furthermore, WM alterations in the PFCC, ATR, and IFO showed robust associations with neuropsychological measures of executive functioning. These results suggest long-range tracts essential for cross-region information transfer show early vulnerability in HD and may explain cognitive problems often present in the prodromal stage. Hum Brain Mapp 36:3717-3732, 2015. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  10. Functional and motor response to low dose olanzapine in huntington's disease: case report Resposta funcional e motora a doses baixas de olanzapina na doença de Huntington: relato de caso

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jerson Laks

    2004-12-01

    Full Text Available Previous reports on the use of olanzapine in Huntington's disease (HD used doses ranging from 10-30 mg. We report a case of HD with marked delusions and behavioral impairment assessed by the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale at baseline and four months later treated with a low dose of olanzapine. The patient improved in motor, psychiatric and activity of daily living symptoms after four months of treatment. The response to a low dose of olanzapine in HD may be an indicator of efficacy in similar cases. Further randomized controlled trials can properly assess these findings.Relatos de casos sobre o uso de olanzapina na doença de Huntington (DH usaram doses variando de 10-30 mg. Este é um relato de caso de DH avaliado pela Unified Huntington Rating Scale no início e quatro meses depois com uma dose baixa de olanzapina. A paciente melhorou dos sintomas motores, psiquiátricos e nas atividades de vida diária após os quatro meses de tratamento. A resposta a baixas doses de olanzapina na DH pode ser um indicador de eficácia em casos similares. Mais estudos controlados randomizados podem avaliar apropriadamente esses achados.

  11. Disease: H01243 [KEGG MEDICUS

    Lifescience Database Archive (English)

    Full Text Available H01243 Huntington's disease-like syndrome Huntington's disease (HD), which is caus...description, gene) ... AUTHORS ... Schneider SA, Walker RH, Bhatia KP ... TITLE ... The Huntington's disease-like ...syndromes: what to consider in patients with a negative Huntington's disease gene

  12. A Systematic Review of the Huntington Disease-Like 2 Phenotype.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, David G; Walker, Ruth H; Connor, Myles; Carr, Jonathan; Margolis, Russell L; Krause, Amanda

    2017-01-01

    Huntington Disease-like 2 (HDL2) is a neurodegenerative disorder similar to Huntington Disease (HD) in its clinical phenotype, genetic characteristics, neuropathology and longitudinal progression. Proposed specific differences include an exclusive African ancestry, lack of eye movement abnormalities, increased Parkinsonism, and acanthocytes in HDL2. The objective was to determine the similarities and differences between HD and HDL2 by establishing the clinical phenotype of HDL2 with the published cases. A literature review of all clinically described cases of HDL2 until the end of 2016 was performed and a descriptive analysis was carried out. Sixty-nine new cases were described between 2001 and 2016. All cases had likely African ancestry, and most were found in South Africa and the USA. Many features were found to be similar to HD, including a strong negative correlation between repeat length and age of onset. Chorea was noted in 48/57 cases (84%). Dementia was reported in 74% patients, and Parkinsonism in 37%. Psychiatric features were reported in 44 out of 47 cases. Patients with chorea had lower expanded repeat lengths compared to patients without chorea. Eye movements were described in 19 cases, 8 were abnormal. Acanthocytes were detected in 4 of the 13 patients tested. Nineteen out of 20 MRIs were reported as abnormal with findings similar to HD. This review clarifies some aspects of the HDL2 phenotype and highlights others which require further investigation. Features that are unique to HDL2 have been documented in a minority of subjects and require prospective validation.

  13. The Huntington's Disease health-related Quality of Life questionnaire (HDQoL): a disease-specific measure of health-related quality of life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hocaoglu, MB; Gaffan, EA; Ho, AK

    2012-01-01

    Hocaoglu MB, Gaffan EA, Ho AK. The Huntington's disease health-related quality of life questionnaire: a disease-specific measure of health-related quality of life. Huntington's disease (HD) is a genetic neurodegenerative disorder characterized by motor, cognitive and psychiatric disturbances, and yet there is no disease-specific patient-reported health-related quality of life outcome measure for patients. Our aim was to develop and validate such an instrument, i.e. the Huntington's Disease health-related Quality of Life questionnaire (HDQoL), to capture the true impact of living with this disease. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with the full spectrum of people living with HD, to form a pool of items, which were then examined in a larger sample prior to data-driven item reduction. We provide the statistical basis for the extraction of three different sets of scales from the HDQoL, and present validation and psychometric data on these scales using a sample of 152 participants living with HD. These new patient-derived scales provide promising patient-reported outcome measures for HD. Section Editor: Aad Tibben, email: a.tibben@lumc.nl PMID:22151007

  14. Molecular Imaging Markers to Track Huntington's Disease Pathology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Heather; De Micco, Rosa; Niccolini, Flavia; Politis, Marios

    2017-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a progressive, monogenic dominant neurodegenerative disorder caused by repeat expansion mutation in the huntingtin gene. The accumulation of mutant huntingtin protein, forming intranuclear inclusions, subsequently leads to degeneration of medium spiny neurons in the striatum and cortical areas. Genetic testing can identify HD gene carriers before individuals develop overt cognitive, psychiatric, and chorea symptoms. Thus, HD gene carriers can be studied in premanifest stages to understand and track the evolution of HD pathology. While advances have been made, the precise pathophysiological mechanisms underlying HD are unclear. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and positron emission tomography (PET) have been employed to understand HD pathology in presymptomatic and symptomatic disease stages. PET imaging uses radioactive tracers to detect specific changes, at a molecular level, which could be used as markers of HD progression and to monitor response to therapeutic treatments for HD gene expansion carriers (HDGECs). This review focuses on available PET techniques, employed in cross-sectional and longitudinal human studies, as biomarkers for HD, and highlights future potential PET targets. PET studies have assessed changes in postsynaptic dopaminergic receptors, brain metabolism, microglial activation, and recently phosphodiesterase 10A (PDE10A) as markers to track HD progression. Alterations in PDE10A expression are the earliest biochemical change identified in HD gene carriers up to 43 years before predicted symptomatic onset. Thus, PDE10A expression could be a promising marker to track HD progression from early premanifest disease stages. Other PET targets which have been less well investigated as biomarkers include cannabinoid, adenosine, and GABA receptors. Future longitudinal studies are required to fully validate these PET biomarkers for use to track disease progression from far-onset premanifest to manifest HD stages. PET imaging

  15. Factor analysis of the hospital anxiety and depression scale among a Huntington's disease population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dale, Maria; Maltby, John; Martucci, Rossana; Shimozaki, Steve

    2015-12-01

    Depression and anxiety are common in Huntington's disease, a genetic neurodegenerative disorder. There is a need for measurement tools of mood to be validated within a Huntington's disease population. The current study aimed to analyze the factor structure of the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale in Huntington's disease. Data from the European Huntington's Disease Network study REGISTRY 3 were used to undertake a factor analysis of the scale among a sample of 492 Huntington's disease mutation carriers. The sample was randomly divided into two equal subsamples and an exploratory factor analysis conducted on the first subsample suggested a two-factor interpretation, using eight of the items. A confirmatory factor analysis was then performed to test six possible models for goodness of fit. A bifactor model, with all items loading onto a general distress factor, with two group factors, comprising four depression and four anxiety items, provided the best fit of the data. The salience of loadings on the bifactor model suggested that loadings were high on the general factor (accounting for 64% of the variance) and low on the group factors (21% for anxiety and 15% for depression). The findings suggest that eight items from the scale perform well among the sample. Consistent with recent developments in modeling the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, a bifactor interpretation for an eight-item version outperformed other extant models. Our findings provide support for an eight-item version of the scale to be used as a measure of general distress within Huntington's disease populations. © 2015 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society.

  16. Treadmill exercise enhances spatial learning ability through suppressing hippocampal apoptosis in Huntington's disease rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ji, Eun-Sang; Kim, You-Mi; Shin, Mal-Soon; Kim, Chang-Ju; Lee, Kwang-Sik; Kim, Kijeong; Ha, Jonglin; Chung, Yong-Rak

    2015-06-01

    Huntington's disease is a chronic neurodegenerative disorder inherited in an autosomal dominant fashion, and characterized as involuntary movement. Quinolinic acid has been used to produce an animal model of Huntington's disease. In the present study, the effect of treadmill exercise on spatial-learning ability and motor coordination focusing on the apoptosis in the hippocampus was investigated using quinolinic acid-induced Huntington's disease rats. Huntington's disease was induced by unilateral intrastriatal injection of quinolinic acid (2 μL of 100 nmol) using stereotaxic instrument. The rats in the treadmill exercise groups were subjected to run on a treadmill for 30 min once a day during 14 days. Spatial learning ability and motor coordination were determined by radial 8-arm maze test and rota-rod test. Immunohistochemistry for caspase-3 and western blot for Bax and Bcl-2 were also conducted for the detection of apoptosis. In the present results, spatial learning ability and motor coordination were deteriorated by intrastriatal injection of quinolinic acid. In contrast, treadmill exercise exerted ameliorating effect on quinolinic acid-induced deterioration of spatial learning ability and motor coordination. Bcl-2 expression in the hippocampus was de-creased and expressions of casepase-3 and Bax in the hippocampus were increased in the quinolinic acid-induced Huntington's disease rats. Treadmill exercise increased Bcl-2 expression and decreased expressions of casepase-3 and Bax in the Huntington's disease rats. The present results showed that treadmill exercise might ameliorate quinolinic acid-induced loss of spatial learning ability and motor coordination by suppressing apoptosis in the hippocampus.

  17. Prediction of manifest Huntington's disease with clinical and imaging measures: a prospective observational study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paulsen, Jane S; Long, Jeffrey D; Ross, Christopher A; Harrington, Deborah L; Erwin, Cheryl J; Williams, Janet K; Westervelt, Holly James; Johnson, Hans J; Aylward, Elizabeth H; Zhang, Ying; Bockholt, H Jeremy; Barker, Roger A

    2014-12-01

    Although the association between cytosine-adenine-guanine (CAG) repeat length and age at onset of Huntington's disease is well known, improved prediction of onset would be advantageous for clinical trial design and prognostic counselling. We compared various measures for tracking progression and predicting conversion to manifest Huntington's disease. In this prospective observational study, we assessed the ability of 40 measures in five domains (motor, cognitive, psychiatric, functional, and imaging) to predict time to motor diagnosis of Huntington's disease, accounting for CAG repeat length, age, and the interaction of CAG repeat length and age. Eligible participants were individuals from the PREDICT-HD study (from 33 centres in six countries [USA, Canada, Germany, Australia, Spain, UK]) with the gene mutation for Huntington's disease but without a motor diagnosis (a rating below 4 on the diagnostic confidence level from the 15-item motor assessment of the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale). Participants were followed up between September, 2002, and July, 2014. We used joint modelling of longitudinal and survival data to examine the extent to which baseline and change of measures analysed separately was predictive of CAG-adjusted age at motor diagnosis. 1078 individuals with a CAG expansion were included in this analysis. Participants were followed up for a mean of 5·1 years (SD 3·3, range 0·0-12·0). 225 (21%) of these participants received a motor diagnosis of Huntington's disease during the study. 37 of 40 cross-sectional and longitudinal clinical and imaging measures were significant predictors of motor diagnosis beyond CAG repeat length and age. The strongest predictors were in the motor, imaging, and cognitive domains: an increase of one SD in total motor score (motor domain) increased the risk of a motor diagnosis by 3·07 times (95% CI 2·26-4·16), a reduction of one SD in putamen volume (imaging domain) increased risk by 3·32 times (2·37-4

  18. Cerebral neurotransmission in huntington's disease and wilson's disease; Zerebrale Neurotransmission bei Chorea Huntington und Morbus Wilson

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Barthel, H.; Sabri, O. [Klinik und Poliklinik fuer Nuklearmedizin, Univ. Leipzig (Germany)

    2002-09-01

    Huntington's disease and Wilson's disease are hereditary disorders with different neuropsychiatric symptoms. In both cases, these symptoms are mainly attributed to functional alterations of neurons, which are located in the basal ganglia. According deficits have been found by investigating the dopaminergic neurotransmission with different PET and SPECT tracers. For both diseases, these deficits revealed to concordantly involve the pre- and postsynaptic compartment. Apart from the dopaminergic system, more recent studies showed alterations of other neurotransmitter systems, like the serotonergic, GABA-ergic and opioide system. Except for scientific studies, nuclear medicine imaging is not regularly required for primary diagnosis of both disorders. In the case of Huntington's disease, however, imaging can be helpful for differential diagnosis to other diseases with similar initial symptoms and to determine the organic manifestation of the gene defect. In addition, neurotransmitter imaging with radiortracers could gain more relevance in the future in supporting decisions on specific treatments or for therapy monitoring in both diseases. (orig.) [German] Bei der Chorea Huntington und dem Morbus Wilson handelt es sich um erbliche Erkrankungen mit unterschiedlicher neuropsychiatrischer Symptomatik, welche im Wesentlichen auf Funktionsstoerungen von im Basalganglienbereich lokalisierten Neuronen zurueckgefuehrt werden. Untersuchungen der dopaminergen Neurotransmission mit verschiedenen PET- und SPECT-Radiopharmaka ergaben dementsprechende Defizite, welche fuer beide Erkrankungen konkordant das prae- und postsynaptische Kompartment betrafen. Juengere Studien deuten darueber hinaus auf Stoerungen anderer Neurotransmitter-Systeme, wie z.B. des serotonergen, GABAergen und Opioid-Systems, hin. Ausserhalb von wissenschaftlichen Fragestellungen ist die nuklearmedizinische Bildgebung bei beiden Erkrankungen in der Primaerdiagnostik eher selten erforderlich. Im

  19. Motor, emotional and cognitive deficits in adult BACHD mice : A model for Huntington's disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Abada, Yah-se K.; Schreiber, Rudy; Ellenbroek, Bart

    2013-01-01

    Rationale: Huntington's disease (HD) is characterized by progressive motor dysfunction, emotional disturbances and cognitive deficits. It is a genetic disease caused by an elongation of the polyglutamine repeats in the huntingtin gene. Whereas HD is a complex disorder, previous studies in mice

  20. Selected CSF biomarkers indicate no evidence of early neuroinflammation in Huntington disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vinther-Jensen, Tua; Börnsen, Lars Svend; Budtz-Jorgensen, Esben

    2016-01-01

    Objective: To investigate CSF biomarkers of neuroinflammation and neurodegeneration in Huntington disease (HD) gene-expansion carriers compared to controls and to investigate these biomarkers in association with clinical HD rating scales and disease burden score. Methods: We collected CSF from 32...

  1. Metabolic network abnormalities in early Huntington's disease : An [F-18]FDG PET study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Feigin, A; Leenders, KL; Moeller, [No Value; Missimer, J; Kuenig, G; Spetsieris, P; Antonini, A; Eidelberg, D

    2001-01-01

    The identification of discrete patterns of altered functional brain circuitry in preclinical Huntington's disease (HD) gene carriers is important to understanding the pathophysiology of this disorder and could be useful as a biologic disease marker. The purpose of this study was to use PET imaging

  2. Longitudinal analysis of the electroencephalogram and sleep phenotype in the R6/2 mouse model of Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fisher, Simon P; Black, Sarah W; Schwartz, Michael D; Wilk, Alan J; Chen, Tsui-Ming; Lincoln, Webster U; Liu, Helen W; Kilduff, Thomas S; Morairty, Stephen R

    2013-07-01

    Deficits in sleep and circadian organization have been identified as common early features in patients with Huntington's disease that correlate with symptom severity and may be instrumental in disease progression. Studies in Huntington's disease gene carriers suggest that alterations in the electroencephalogram may reflect underlying neuronal dysfunction that is present in the premanifest stage. We conducted a longitudinal characterization of sleep/wake and electroencephalographic activity in the R6/2 mouse model of Huntington's disease to determine whether analogous electroencephalographic 'signatures' could be identified early in disease progression. R6/2 and wild-type mice were implanted for electroencephalographic recordings along with telemetry for the continuous recording of activity and body temperature. Diurnal patterns of activity and core body temperature were progressively disrupted in R6/2 mice, with a large reduction in the amplitude of these rhythms apparent by 13 weeks of age. The diurnal variation in sleep/wake states was gradually attenuated as sleep became more fragmented and total sleep time was reduced relative to wild-type mice. These genotypic differences were augmented at 17 weeks and evident across the entire 24-h period. Quantitative electroencephalogram analysis revealed anomalous increases in high beta and gamma activity (25-60 Hz) in all sleep/wake states in R6/2 mice, along with increases in theta activity during both non-rapid eye movement and rapid eye movement sleep and a reduction of delta power in non-rapid eye movement sleep. These dramatic alterations in quantitative electroencephalographic measures were apparent from our earliest recording (9 weeks), before any major differences in diurnal physiology or sleep/wake behaviour occurred. In addition, the homeostatic response to sleep deprivation was greatly attenuated with disease progression. These findings demonstrate the sensitivity of quantitative electroencephalographic

  3. Health-related quality of life and unmet healthcare needs in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Walsem, Marleen R; Howe, Emilie I; Ruud, Gunvor A; Frich, Jan C; Andelic, Nada

    2017-01-07

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a rare neurodegenerative disorder with a prevalence of 6 per 100.000. Despite increasing research activity on HD, evidence on healthcare utilization, patients' needs for healthcare services and Health-Related Quality of Life (HRQoL) is still sparse. The present study describes HRQoL in a Norwegian cohort of HD patients, and assesses associations between unmet healthcare and social support service needs and HRQoL. In this cross-sectional population-based study, 84 patients with a clinical diagnosis of HD living in the South-East of Norway completed the HRQoL questionnaire EuroQol, EQ-5D-3L. Unmet needs for healthcare and social support services were assessed by the Needs and Provision Complexity Scale (NPCS). Furthermore, functional ability was determined using the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS) Functional assessment scales. Socio-demographics (age, gender, marital status, occupation, residence, housing situation) and clinical characteristics (disease duration, total functional capacity, comorbidity) were also recorded. Descriptive statistics were used to describe the patients' HRQoL. Regression analyses were conducted in order to investigate the relationship between unmet healthcare needs and self-reported HRQoL. The patients were divided across five disease stages as follows: Stage I: n = 12 (14%), Stage II: n = 22 (27%), Stage III: n = 19 (23%), Stage IV: n = 14 (16%), and Stage V: n = 17 (20%). Overall HRQoL was lowest in patients with advanced disease (Stages IV and V), while patients in the middle phase (Stage III) showed the most varied health profile for the five EQ-5D-3L dimensions. The regression model including level of unmet needs, clinical characteristics and demographics (age and education) accounted for 42% of variance in HRQoL. A higher level of unmet needs was associated with lower HRQoL (β value - 0.228; p = 0.018) whereas a better total functional capacity corresponded to

  4. Social Cognition, Executive Functions and Self-Report of Psychological Distress in Huntington's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larsen, Ida Unmack; Vinther-Jensen, Tua; Nielsen, Jørgen Erik; Gade, Anders; Vogel, Asmus

    2016-12-28

    Huntington's disease (HD) is characterized by motor symptoms, psychiatric symptoms and cognitive impairment in, inter alia, executive functions and social cognition. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between subjective feeling of psychological distress using a self-report questionnaire and performances on tests of executive functions and social cognition in a large consecutive cohort of HD patients. 50 manifest HD patients were tested in social cognition and executive functions and each answered a self-report questionnaire about current status of perceived psychological distress (the Symptom Checklist-90-Revised (SCL-90-R)). Correlation analyses of test performance and SCL-90-R scores were made as well as stepwise linear regression analyses with the SCL-90-R GSI score and test performances as dependent variables. We found that less psychological distress was significantly associated with worse performances on social cognitive tests (mean absolute correlation .34) and that there were no significant correlations between perceived psychological distress and performance on tests of executive functions. The correlations between perceived psychological distress and performance on social cognitive tests remained significant after controlling for age, Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale-99 total motor score and performance on tests of executive functions. Based on previous findings that insight and apathy are closely connected and may be mediated by overlapping neuroanatomical networks involving the prefrontal cortex and frontostriatal circuits, we speculate that apathy/and or impaired insight may offer an explanation for the correlation between self-report of psychological distress and performance on social cognitive tests in this study.

  5. Sleep and circadian dysfunction in neurodegenerative disorders: insights from a mouse model of Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuljis, Dika; Schroeder, Analyne M; Kudo, Takashi; Loh, Dawn H; Willison, David L; Colwell, Christopher S

    2012-09-01

    Sleep disorders are common in patients with neurogenerative diseases and manifest early in the disease process. Among a number of possible mechanisms underlying the sleep disturbances, there is evidence that dysfunction in the circadian system is a contributing factor. Focusing on a mouse model of Huntington's disease has enabled us to determine that at the onset of symptoms, spontaneous electrical activity of neurons within the central clock is disrupted even though the molecular clockwork is still functional. These findings suggest that the fundamental deficit contributing to disordered sleep is reduced SCN output. The mechanism underlying this deficit is not yet known, but mitochondrial dysfunction and oxidative stress are likely involved. Disruption of circadian output from the SCN would be expected to have wide ranging impact on the body including SCN regulated brain regions and the heart. In fact, there is a great deal of overlap in the non-motor symptoms experienced by HD patients and the consequences of circadian disruption. This raises the possibility that the disordered sleep and circadian function experienced by HD patients may be an integral part of the disease. Furthermore, we speculate that circadian dysfunction may accelerate the pathology underlying HD. If these hypotheses are correct, we should focus on treating circadian misalignment and sleep disruptions early in disease progression.

  6. The BACHD Rat Model of Huntington Disease Shows Signs of Fronto-Striatal Dysfunction in Two Operant Conditioning Tests of Short-Term Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clemensson, Erik Karl Håkan; Clemensson, Laura Emily; Riess, Olaf; Nguyen, Huu Phuc

    2017-01-01

    The BACHD rat is a recently developed transgenic animal model of Huntington disease, a progressive neurodegenerative disorder characterized by extensive loss of striatal neurons. Cognitive impairments are common among patients, and characterization of similar deficits in animal models of the disease is therefore of interest. The present study assessed the BACHD rats' performance in the delayed alternation and the delayed non-matching to position test, two Skinner box-based tests of short-term memory function. The transgenic rats showed impaired performance in both tests, indicating general problems with handling basic aspects of the tests, while short-term memory appeared to be intact. Similar phenotypes have been found in rats with fronto-striatal lesions, suggesting that Huntington disease-related neuropathology might be present in the BACHD rats. Further analyses indicated that the performance deficit in the delayed alternation test might be due to impaired inhibitory control, which has also been implicated in Huntington disease patients. The study ultimately suggests that the BACHD rats might suffer from neuropathology and cognitive impairments reminiscent of those of Huntington disease patients.

  7. The BACHD Rat Model of Huntington Disease Shows Signs of Fronto-Striatal Dysfunction in Two Operant Conditioning Tests of Short-Term Memory.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erik Karl Håkan Clemensson

    Full Text Available The BACHD rat is a recently developed transgenic animal model of Huntington disease, a progressive neurodegenerative disorder characterized by extensive loss of striatal neurons. Cognitive impairments are common among patients, and characterization of similar deficits in animal models of the disease is therefore of interest. The present study assessed the BACHD rats' performance in the delayed alternation and the delayed non-matching to position test, two Skinner box-based tests of short-term memory function. The transgenic rats showed impaired performance in both tests, indicating general problems with handling basic aspects of the tests, while short-term memory appeared to be intact. Similar phenotypes have been found in rats with fronto-striatal lesions, suggesting that Huntington disease-related neuropathology might be present in the BACHD rats. Further analyses indicated that the performance deficit in the delayed alternation test might be due to impaired inhibitory control, which has also been implicated in Huntington disease patients. The study ultimately suggests that the BACHD rats might suffer from neuropathology and cognitive impairments reminiscent of those of Huntington disease patients.

  8. Sustained mobilization of endogenous neural progenitors delays disease progression in a transgenic model of Huntington's Disease

    OpenAIRE

    Benraiss, Abdellatif; Toner, Michael J.; Xu, Qiwu; Bruel-Jungerman, Elodie; Rogers, Eloise H.; Fushun WANG; Economides, Aris N.; Davidson, Beverly L.; Kageyama, Ryoichiro; Nedergaard, Maiken; Goldman, Steven A.

    2013-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a neurodegenerative disease characterized in part by the loss of striatopallidal medium spiny projection neurons (MSNs). Expression of BDNF and noggin via intracerebroventricular (ICV) delivery in an adenoviral vector triggers the addition of new neurons to the neostriatum. In this study, we found that a single ICV injection of the adeno-associated viruses AAV4-BDNF and AAV4-noggin triggered the sustained recruitment of new MSNs in both wild-type and R6/2 mice, a ...

  9. Dantrolene is neuroprotective in Huntington's disease transgenic mouse model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chen Xi

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Huntington's disease (HD is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder caused by a polyglutamine expansion in the Huntingtin protein which results in the selective degeneration of striatal medium spiny neurons (MSNs. Our group has previously demonstrated that calcium (Ca2+ signaling is abnormal in MSNs from the yeast artificial chromosome transgenic mouse model of HD (YAC128. Moreover, we demonstrated that deranged intracellular Ca2+ signaling sensitizes YAC128 MSNs to glutamate-induced excitotoxicity when compared to wild type (WT MSNs. In previous studies we also observed abnormal neuronal Ca2+ signaling in neurons from spinocerebellar ataxia 2 (SCA2 and spinocerebellar ataxia 3 (SCA3 mouse models and demonstrated that treatment with dantrolene, a ryanodine receptor antagonist and clinically relevant Ca2+ signaling stabilizer, was neuroprotective in experiments with these mouse models. The aim of the current study was to evaluate potential beneficial effects of dantrolene in experiments with YAC128 HD mouse model. Results The application of caffeine and glutamate resulted in increased Ca2+ release from intracellular stores in YAC128 MSN cultures when compared to WT MSN cultures. Pre-treatment with dantrolene protected YAC128 MSNs from glutamate excitotoxicty, with an effective concentration of 100 nM and above. Feeding dantrolene (5 mg/kg twice a week to YAC128 mice between 2 months and 11.5 months of age resulted in significantly improved performance in the beam-walking and gait-walking assays. Neuropathological analysis revealed that long-term dantrolene feeding to YAC128 mice significantly reduced the loss of NeuN-positive striatal neurons and reduced formation of Httexp nuclear aggregates. Conclusions Our results support the hypothesis that deranged Ca2+ signaling plays an important role in HD pathology. Our data also implicate the RyanRs as a potential therapeutic target for the treatment of HD and demonstrate that Ryan

  10. ENFERMEDAD DE HUNTINGTON: MODELOS EXPERIMENTALES Y PERSPECTIVAS TERAPÉUTICAS Huntington'disease: Experimentals Models and Therapeutic Perspectives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    TERESA SERRANO SÁNCHEZ

    Full Text Available La enfermedad de Huntington (EH es un trastorno degenerativo de Weiss de origen hereditario. Hasta el momento no existe un tratamiento efectivo para la enfermedad que inexorablemente después de transcurridos 15 a 20 años, evoluciona hacia incapacidad total o muerte. En este trabajo se revisan las características clínicas y morfológicas de la EH y los modelos experimentales más utilizados para su estudio tomando como fuente, artículos indexados en la base de datos Medline publicados en los últimos 20 años. Se valoran las ventajas y desventajas de estos modelos y su perspectiva para el desarrollo de ensayos clínicos. El consenso de lo reportado plantea que de los modelos tóxicos, los inducidos por neurotoxinas tales como ácido quinolínico parecen ser los más adecuados para reproducir las características neuropatológicas, y por otro lado los modelos genéticos contribuyen con más evidencias al conocimiento del origen etiológico de la enfermedad. Numerosos tratamientos han sido aplicados en el manejo de las manifestaciones clínicas que aparecen en EH, sin poder detener o disminuir las afectaciones que derivan de la pérdida neuronal. La sintomatología clínica ha sido posible reproducirla, al menos en parte, en animales de experimentación lo que ha permitido realizar ensayos terapéuticos. Desde el punto de vista de tratamiento, lo que más promisorio parece ser, la terapia celular con células provenientes de diferentes fuentes y dentro de ellas las no neurales, que implican menor censura ética y mayor factibilidad de obtención para la aplicación en los enfermos. Por otro lado el desarrollo de la tecnología del ARN de interferencia, emerge como una herramienta terapéutica potencial para el tratamiento de EH, así como para responder interrogantes básicas relacionadas con el desarrollo de la enfermedad.Huntington'disease (HD is a degenerative dysfunction of hereditary origin. Up to date there is not, an effective treatment

  11. Striatal and extrastriatal atrophy in Huntington's disease and its relationship with length of the CAG repeat

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H.H. Ruocco

    2006-08-01

    Full Text Available Huntington's disease (HD is an autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disorder that affects the striatum most severely. However, except for juvenile forms, relative preservation of the cerebellum has been reported. The objective of the present study was to perform MRI measurements of caudate, putamen, cerebral, and cerebellar volumes and correlate these findings with the length of the CAG repeat and clinical parameters. We evaluated 50 consecutive patients with HD using MRI volumetric measurements and compared them to normal controls. Age at onset of the disease ranged from 4 to 73 years (mean: 43.1 years. The length of the CAG repeat ranged from 40 to 69 (mean: 47.2 CAG. HD patients presented marked atrophy of the caudate and putamen, as well as reduced cerebellar and cerebral volumes. There was a significant correlation between age at onset of HD and length of the CAG repeat, as well as clinical disability and age at onset. The degree of basal ganglia atrophy correlated with the length of the CAG repeat. There was no correlation between cerebellar or cerebral volume and length of the CAG repeat. However, there was a tendency to a positive correlation between duration of disease and cerebellar atrophy. While there was a negative correlation of length of the CAG repeat with age at disease onset and with striatal degeneration, its influence on extrastriatal atrophy, including the cerebellum, was not clear. Extrastriatal atrophy occurs later in HD and may be related to disease duration.

  12. CAG repeat expansion in Huntington disease determines age at onset in a fully dominant fashion

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lee, J-M; Ramos, E M; Lee, J-H

    2012-01-01

    Age at onset of diagnostic motor manifestations in Huntington disease (HD) is strongly correlated with an expanded CAG trinucleotide repeat. The length of the normal CAG repeat allele has been reported also to influence age at onset, in interaction with the expanded allele. Due to profound implic...

  13. In vivo evidence of cerebellar atrophy and cerebral white matter loss in Huntington disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fennema-Notestine, C; Archibald, S.L.; Jacobsen, M.W.

    2004-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To investigate the regional pattern of white matter and cerebellar changes, as well as subcortical and cortical changes, in Huntington disease (HD) using morphometric analyses of structural MRI. METHODS: Fifteen individuals with HD and 22 controls were studied; groups were similar in age......, supporting a similar mechanism of degeneration...

  14. Huntington's disease: a review of the literature on prevalence and treatment of neuropsychiatric phenomena.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Naarding, P.; Kremer, H.P.H.; Zitman, F.G.

    2001-01-01

    A review was made of the literature on Huntington's disease, including the clinical neurology, recent advances in pathophysiology and genetic mechanisms and psychopathology. It can be concluded that research on the latter is scarce, although the subject is relevant because of the co-occurrence of

  15. Huntington's Disease Research Roster Support with a Microcomputer Database Management System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gersting, J. M.; Conneally, P. M.; Beidelman, K.

    1983-01-01

    This paper chronicles the MEGADATS (Medical Genetics Acquisition and DAta Transfer System) database development effort in collecting, storing, retrieving, and plotting human family pedigrees. The newest system, MEGADATS-3M, is detailed. Emphasis is on the microcomputer version of MEGADATS-3M and its use to support the Huntington's Disease research roster project. Examples of data input and pedigree plotting are included.

  16. Motor cortex synchronization influences the rhythm of motor performance in premanifest huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casula, Elias P; Mayer, Isabella M S; Desikan, Mahalekshmi; Tabrizi, Sarah J; Rothwell, John C; Orth, Michael

    2018-01-22

    In Huntington's disease there is evidence of structural damage in the motor system, but it is still unclear how to link this to the behavioral disorder of movement. One feature of choreic movement is variable timing and coordination between sequences of actions. We postulate this results from desynchronization of neural activity in cortical motor areas. The objective of this study was to explore the ability to synchronize activity in a motor network using transcranial magnetic stimulation and to relate this to timing of motor performance. We examined synchronization in oscillatory activity of cortical motor areas in response to an external input produced by a pulse of transcranial magnetic stimulation. We combined this with EEG to compare the response of 16 presymptomatic Huntington's disease participants with 16 age-matched healthy volunteers to test whether the strength of synchronization relates to the variability of motor performance at the following 2 tasks: a grip force task and a speeded-tapping task. Phase synchronization in response to M1 stimulation was lower in Huntington's disease than healthy volunteers (P motor performance also showed stronger oscillatory synchronization (r = -0.356; P motor command to respond to more subtle, physiological inputs from other brain areas. This novel insight indicates that impairments of the timing accuracy of synchronization and desynchronization could be a physiological basis for some key clinical features of Huntington's disease. © 2018 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society. © 2018 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society.

  17. Examination of Huntington's disease with atypical clinical features in a Bangladeshi family tree.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Mamun, Md Mahfuz; Sarker, Suprovath Kumar; Qadri, Syeda Kashfi; Shirin, Tahmina; Mohammad, Quazi Deen; LaRocque, Regina; Karlsson, Elinor K; Saha, Narayan; Asaduzzaman, Muhammad; Qadri, Firdausi; Mannoor, Md Kaiissar

    2016-12-01

    Atypical manifestation of Huntington's disease (HD) could inform ongoing research into HD genetic modifiers not present in the primarily European populations studied to date. This work demonstrates that expanding HD genetic testing into under-resourced healthcare settings can benefit both local communities and ongoing research into HD etiology and new therapies.

  18. In vivo evidence of cerebellar atrophy and cerebral white matter loss in Huntington disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fennema-Notestine, C; Archibald, S.L.; Jacobsen, M.W.

    2004-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To investigate the regional pattern of white matter and cerebellar changes, as well as subcortical and cortical changes, in Huntington disease (HD) using morphometric analyses of structural MRI. METHODS: Fifteen individuals with HD and 22 controls were studied; groups were similar in age...

  19. Striatal dopamine D2 receptors, metabolism, and volume in preclinical Huntington disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Oostrom, JCH; Maguire, RP; Verschuuren-Bemelmans, CC; van der Duin, LV; Pruim, J; Roos, RAC; Leenders, KL

    2005-01-01

    Among 27 preclinical carriers of the Huntington disease mutation (PMC), the authors found normal striatal values for MRI volumetry in 88% and for fluorodesoxyglucose PET metabolic index in 67%. Raclopride PET binding potential (RAC-BP) was decreased in 50% and correlated with increases in the

  20. Using Talking Mats to Support Communication in Persons with Huntington's Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferm, Ulrika; Sahlin, Anna; Sundin, Linda; Hartelius, Lena

    2010-01-01

    Background: Many individuals with Huntington's disease experience reduced functioning in cognition, language and communication. Talking Mats is a visually based low technological augmentative communication framework that supports communication in people with different cognitive and communicative disabilities. Aims: To evaluate Talking Mats as a…

  1. 4p16.3 haplotype modifying age at onset of Huntington disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nørremølle, A; Budtz-Jørgensen, E; Fenger, K

    2009-01-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is caused by an expanded CAG repeat sequence in the HD gene. Although the age at onset is correlated to the CAG repeat length, this correlation only explains approximately half of the variation in onset age. Less variation between siblings indicates that the variation is...

  2. A clinical classification acknowledging neuropsychiatric and cognitive impairment in Huntingtons disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vinther-Jensen, Tua; Larsen, Ida U; Hjermind, Lena E

    2014-01-01

    BackgroundInvoluntary movements, neuropsychiatric symptoms, and cognitive impairment are all part of the symptom triad in Huntington¿s disease (HD). Despite the fact that neuropsychiatric symptoms and cognitive decline may be early manifestations of HD, the clinical diagnosis is conventionally...

  3. Not on the Face Alone: Perception of Contextualized Face Expressions in Huntington's Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aviezer, Hillel; Bentin, Shlomo; Hassin, Ran R.; Meschino, Wendy S.; Kennedy, Jeanne; Grewal, Sonya; Esmail, Sherali; Cohen, Sharon; Moscovitch, Morris

    2009-01-01

    Numerous studies have demonstrated that Huntington's disease mutation-carriers have deficient explicit recognition of isolated facial expressions. There are no studies, however, which have investigated the recognition of facial expressions embedded within an emotional body and scene context. Real life facial expressions are typically embedded in…

  4. Late-onset Huntington disease with intermediate CAG repeats: true or false?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Groen, J.L.; de Bie, R.M.A.; Foncke, E.M.J.; Roos, R.A.C.; Leenders, K.L.; Tijssen, M.A.J.

    2010-01-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is a neurodegenerative disorder associated with an expanded CAG trinucleotide repeat length in the huntingtin gene. 'Intermediate alleles' with 27 to 35 CAG repeats generally do not cause HD but are unstable upon germ-line transmission. Insights in CAG repeat mosaicism and

  5. Language Deficits in Pre-Symptomatic Huntington's Disease: Evidence from Hungarian

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nemeth, Dezso; Dye, Cristina D.; Sefcsik, Tamas; Janacsek, Karolina; Turi, Zsolt; Londe, Zsuzsa; Klivenyi, Peter; Kincses, Zsigmond Tamas; Szabo, Nikoletta; Vecsei, Laszlo; Ullman, Michael T.

    2012-01-01

    A limited number of studies have investigated language in Huntington's disease (HD). These have generally reported abnormalities in rule-governed (grammatical) aspects of language, in both syntax and morphology. Several studies of verbal inflectional morphology in English and French have reported evidence of over-active rule processing, such as…

  6. Tetrabenazine as anti-chorea therapy in Huntington Disease: an open-label continuation study. Huntington Study Group/TETRA-HD Investigators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frank Samuel

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Tetrabenazine (TBZ selectively depletes central monoamines by reversibly binding to the type-2 vesicular monoamine transporter. A previous double blind study in Huntington disease (HD demonstrated that TBZ effectively suppressed chorea, with a favorable short-term safety profile (Neurology 2006;66:366-372. The objective of this study was to assess the long-term safety and effectiveness of TBZ for chorea in HD. Methods Subjects who completed the 13-week, double blind protocol were invited to participate in this open label extension study for up to 80 weeks. Subjects were titrated to the best individual dose or a maximum of 200 mg/day. Chorea was assessed using the Total Maximal Chorea (TMC score from the Unified Huntington Disease Rating Scale. Results Of the 75 participants, 45 subjects completed 80 weeks. Three participants terminated due to adverse events (AEs including depression, delusions with associated previous suicidal behavior, and vocal tics. One subject died due to breast cancer. The other 26 subjects chose not to continue on with each ensuing extension for various reasons. When mild and unrelated AEs were excluded, the most commonly reported AEs (number of subjects were sedation/somnolence (18, depressed mood (17, anxiety (13, insomnia (10, and akathisia (9. Parkinsonism and dysphagia scores were significantly increased at week 80 compared to baseline. At week 80, chorea had significantly improved from baseline with a mean reduction in the TMC score of 4.6 (SD 5.5 units. The mean dosage at week 80 was 63.4 mg (range 12.5-175 mg. Conclusions TBZ effectively suppresses HD-related chorea for up to 80 weeks. Patients treated chronically with TBZ should be monitored for parkinsonism, dysphagia and other side effects including sleep disturbance, depression, anxiety, and akathisia. Trial Registration Clinicaltrials.gov registration number (initial study: NCT00219804

  7. Association Between Motor Symptoms and Brain Metabolism in Early Huntington Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaura, Véronique; Lavisse, Sonia; Payoux, Pierre; Goldman, Serge; Verny, Christophe; Krystkowiak, Pierre; Damier, Philippe; Supiot, Frédéric; Bachoud-Levi, Anne-Catherine; Remy, Philippe

    2017-09-01

    Brain hypometabolism is associated with the clinical consequences of the degenerative process, but little is known about regional hypermetabolism, sometimes observed in the brain of patients with clinically manifest Huntington disease (HD). Studying the role of regional hypermetabolism is needed to better understand its interaction with the motor symptoms of the disease. To investigate the association between brain hypometabolism and hypermetabolism with motor scores of patients with early HD. This study started in 2001, and analysis was completed in 2016. Sixty symptomatic patients with HD and 15 healthy age-matched control individuals underwent positron emission tomography to measure cerebral metabolism in this cross-sectional study. They also underwent the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale motor test, and 2 subscores were extracted: (1) a hyperkinetic score, combining dystonia and chorea, and (2) a hypokinetic score, combining bradykinesia and rigidity. Statistical parametric mapping software (SPM5) was used to identify all hypo- and hypermetabolic regions in patients with HD relative to control individuals. Correlation analyses (P < .001, uncorrected) between motor subscores and brain metabolic values were performed for regions with significant hypometabolism and hypermetabolism. Among 60 patients with HD, 22 were women (36.7%), and the mean (SD) age was 44.6 (7.6) years. Of the 15 control individuals, 7 were women (46.7%), and the mean (SD) age was 42.2 (7.3) years. In statistical parametric mapping, striatal hypometabolism was significantly correlated with the severity of all motor scores. Hypermetabolism was negatively correlated only with hypokinetic scores in the cuneus (z score = 3.95, P < .001), the lingual gyrus (z score = 4.31, P < .001), and the crus I/II of the cerebellum (z score = 3.77, P < .001), a region connected to associative cortical areas. More severe motor scores were associated with higher metabolic

  8. Substance abuse may hasten motor onset of Huntington disease: Evaluating the Enroll-HD database.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schultz, Jordan L; Kamholz, John A; Moser, David J; Feely, Shawna M E; Paulsen, Jane S; Nopoulos, Peg C

    2017-02-28

    To investigate the relationship between substances of abuse and age at motor onset (AMO) in patients with Huntington disease (HD) in a large and diverse patient population. This was a retrospective, observational study of the Enroll-HD database. Participants were determined to belong to 1 of 3 substance abuse groups: (1) tobacco abusers, (2) alcohol abusers, and (3) drug abusers. A group of participants who had never abused substances served as a control group. The average AMO of patients in the substance abuse groups was compared to the control group. The number of CAG repeats was used as a covariate in all analyses. The average difference in AMOs of participants in the tobacco (n = 566), alcohol (n = 374), and drug abuse groups (n = 217) compared to the control group (n = 692) were 2.3 (F1, 1,258 = 33.8, p < 0.0001), 1.0 (F1, 1,066 = 4.2, p = 0.04), and 3.3 (F1, 909 = 29.7, p < 0.0001) years earlier, respectively. In all substance abuse groups, the AMO was lowered to a greater degree in female participants than it was in male participants. Substances of abuse have a strong effect on the AMO in patients with HD. These effects seem to be amplified in women with HD compared to men. These results may provide a safe intervention capable of adding disease-free years to patients with HD. © 2017 American Academy of Neurology.

  9. Longitudinal Psychiatric Symptoms Progress in Prodromal Huntington Disease: a Decade of Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Epping, Eric A.; Kim, Ji-In; Craufurd, David; Brashers-Krug, Thomas M.; Anderson, Karen E.; McCusker, Elizabeth; Luther, Jolene; Long, Jeffrey D.; Paulsen, Jane S.

    2017-01-01

    Objective Psychiatric symptoms are a significant aspect of Huntington disease (HD), an inherited neurodegenerative illness. The presentation of these symptoms is highly variable in patients, and their course does not fully correlate with motor or cognitive disease progression. We sought to better understand the development and longitudinal course of psychiatric manifestations in patients who carry the HD mutation starting from the prodromal period prior to motor diagnosis. Method Longitudinal measures for up to 10 years of psychiatric symptoms from the Symptom Checklist-90-Revised were obtained from 1305 participants (1007 carrying the HD mutation) and 1235 companions enrolled in the Neurobiological Predictors of Huntington’s Disease (PREDICT-HD) study. Participants with the HD mutation were stratified into three groups according to probability of motor diagnosis within five years. Using linear mixed effects regression models, differences in psychiatric symptoms at baseline and over time between HD mutation positive groups and controls were compared as well as between HD mutation participants and their companions. Results 19 of 24 psychiatric measures showed significant increases at baseline and longitudinally in HD mutation carrying individuals or their companions versus controls. The differences were greatest when comparing symptom reports from companions (versus self-report), especially in participants who were closest to motor diagnosis. Conclusions Results indicate psychiatric manifestations develop more often than previously thought in the HD prodrome. Symptoms also increase with progression of disease severity. Companions of HD mutation carriers also report greater psychiatric symptoms over time compared to affected individuals, consistent with decreasing awareness. PMID:26472629

  10. Glutathione S-Transferase Omega 1 variation does not influence age at onset of Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arning, Larissa; Jagiello, Peter; Wieczorek, Stefan; Saft, Carsten; Andrich, Jürgen; Epplen, Jörg T

    2004-03-24

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a fully penetrant, autosomal dominantly inherited disorder associated with abnormal expansions of a stretch of perfect CAG repeats in the 5' part of the IT15 gene. The number of repeat units is highly predictive for the age at onset (AO) of the disorder. But AO is only modestly correlated with repeat length when intermediate HD expansions are considered. Circumstantial evidence suggests that additional features of the HD course are based on genetic traits. Therefore, it may be possible to investigate the genetic background of HD, i.e. to map the loci underlying the development and progression of the disease. Recently an association of Glutathione S-Transferase Omega 1 (GSTO1) and possibly of GSTO2 with AO was demonstrated for, both, Alzheimer's (AD) and Parkinson's disease (PD). We have genotyped the polymorphisms rs4925 GSTO1 and rs2297235 GSTO2 in 232 patients with HD and 228 controls. After genotyping GSTO1 and GSTO2 polymorphisms, firstly there was no statistically significant difference in AO for HD patients, as well as secondly for HD patients vs. controls concerning, both, genotype and allele frequencies, respectively. The GSTO1 and GSTO2 genes flanked by the investigated polymorphisms are not comprised in a primary candidate region influencing AO in HD.

  11. Glutathione S-Transferase Ω 1 variation does not influence age at onset of Huntington's disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arning, Larissa; Jagiello, Peter; Wieczorek, Stefan; Saft, Carsten; Andrich, Jürgen; Epplen, Jörg T

    2004-01-01

    Background Huntington's disease (HD) is a fully penetrant, autosomal dominantly inherited disorder associated with abnormal expansions of a stretch of perfect CAG repeats in the 5' part of the IT15 gene. The number of repeat units is highly predictive for the age at onset (AO) of the disorder. But AO is only modestly correlated with repeat length when intermediate HD expansions are considered. Circumstantial evidence suggests that additional features of the HD course are based on genetic traits. Therefore, it may be possible to investigate the genetic background of HD, i.e. to map the loci underlying the development and progression of the disease. Recently an association of Glutathione S-Transferase Ω 1 (GSTO1) and possibly of GSTO2 with AO was demonstrated for, both, Alzheimer's (AD) and Parkinson's disease (PD). Methods We have genotyped the polymorphisms rs4925 GSTO1 and rs2297235 GSTO2 in 232 patients with HD and 228 controls. Results After genotyping GSTO1 and GSTO2 polymorphisms, firstly there was no statistically significant difference in AO for HD patients, as well as secondly for HD patients vs. controls concerning, both, genotype and allele frequencies, respectively. Conclusion The GSTO1 and GSTO2 genes flanked by the investigated polymorphisms are not comprised in a primary candidate region influencing AO in HD. PMID:15040808

  12. Six psychotropics for pre-symptomatic & early Alzheimer's (MCI, Parkinson's, and Huntington's disease modification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edward C Lauterbach

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The quest for neuroprotective drugs to slow the progression of neurodegenerative diseases (NDDs, including Alzheimer's disease (AD, Parkinson's disease (PD, and Huntington's disease (HD, has been largely unrewarding. Preclinical evidence suggests that repurposing quetiapine, lithium, valproate, fluoxetine, donepezil, and memantine for early and pre-symptomatic disease-modification in NDDs may be promising and can spare regulatory barriers. The literature of these psychotropics in early stage and pre-symptomatic AD, PD, and HD is reviewed and propitious findings follow. Mild cognitive impairment (MCI phase of AD: salutary human randomized controlled trial findings for low-dose lithium and, in selected patients, donepezil await replication. Pre-symptomatic AD: human epidemiological data indicate that lithium reduces AD risk. Animal model studies (AMS reveal encouraging results for quetiapine, lithium, donepezil, and memantine. Early PD: valproate AMS findings show promise. Pre-symptomatic PD: lithium and valproate AMS findings are encouraging. Early HD: uncontrolled clinical data indicate non-progression with lithium, fluoxetine, donepezil, and memantine. Pre-symptomatic HD: lithium and valproate are auspicious in AMS. Many other promising findings awaiting replication (valproate in MCI; lithium, valproate, fluoxetine in pre-symptomatic AD; lithium in early PD; lithium, valproate, fluoxetine in pre-symptomatic PD; donepezil in early HD; lithium, fluoxetine, memantine in pre-symptomatic HD are reviewed. Dose- and stage-dependent effects are considered. Suggestions for signal-enhancement in human trials are provided for each NDD stage.

  13. 3-Hydroxykynurenine and quinolinate: pathogenic synergism in early grade Huntington's disease?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guidetti, Paolo; Schwarcz, Robert

    2003-01-01

    Huntington's Disease (HD), an inherited neurodegenerative disorder, is caused by an abnormal polyglutamine extension of a protein named huntingtin. This genetic defect is believed to result in heightened neuronal susceptibility to excitotoxic injury, a likely mechanism of neurodegeneration in HD. Two neuroactive kynurenine pathway metabolites, quinolinate (QUIN) and kynurenate (KYNA), have been proposed to play critical roles in the precipitation and prevention, respectively, of excitotoxic neuron death in HD. We now provide evidence that a third kynurenine pathway metabolite, 3-hydroxykynurenine (3-HK), should also be considered a pathogen in HD. The brain levels of this free radical generator are increased 5-10-fold in early stage (Grade 1) HD patients. In the same brains, QUIN levels are also significantly elevated in the cortex and in the neostriatum, but not in the cerebellum. In contrast, brain 3-HK and QUIN levels are either unchanged or reduced in Grade 2 and end stage (Grade 3-4) HD patients. Brain KYNA levels are moderately increased during the early disease stages and decrease as the illness progresses. In rats, 3-HK potentiates striatal QUIN toxicity, and this pro-excitotoxic effect can be prevented by free radical scavengers. Taken together, these studies provide further evidence for an involvement of kynurenine pathway metabolites in the early phases of HD neuropathology and suggest novel therapeutic strategies for the disease.

  14. The Medicinal Chemistry of Natural and Semisynthetic Compounds against Parkinson's and Huntington's Diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zanforlin, Enrico; Zagotto, Giuseppe; Ribaudo, Giovanni

    2017-11-15

    Among the diseases affecting the central nervous system (CNS), neurodegenerations attract the interest of both the clinician and the medicinal chemist. The increasing average age of population, the growing number of patients, and the lack of long-term effective remedies push ahead the quest for novel tools against this class of pathologies. We present a review on the state of the art of the molecules (or combination of molecules) of natural origin that are currently under study against two well-defined pathologies: Parkinson's disease (PD) and Huntington's disease (HD). Nowadays, very few tools are available for preventing or counteracting the progression of such diseases. Two major parameters were considered for the preparation of this review: particular attention was reserved to these research works presenting well-defined molecular mechanisms for the studied compounds, and where available, papers reporting in vivo data were preferred. A literature search for peer-reviewed articles using PubMed, Scopus, and Reaxys databases was performed, exploiting different keywords and logical operators: 91 papers were considered (preferentially published after 2015). The review presents a brief overview on the etiology of the studied neurodegenerations and the current treatments, followed by a detailed discussion of the natural and semisynthetic compounds dividing them in different paragraphs considering their several mechanisms of action.

  15. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of coenzyme Q10 in Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGarry, Andrew; McDermott, Michael; Kieburtz, Karl; de Blieck, Elisabeth A; Beal, Flint; Marder, Karen; Ross, Christopher; Shoulson, Ira; Gilbert, Peter; Mallonee, William M; Guttman, Mark; Wojcieszek, Joanne; Kumar, Rajeev; LeDoux, Mark S; Jenkins, Mary; Rosas, H Diana; Nance, Martha; Biglan, Kevin; Como, Peter; Dubinsky, Richard M; Shannon, Kathleen M; O'Suilleabhain, Padraig; Chou, Kelvin; Walker, Francis; Martin, Wayne; Wheelock, Vicki L; McCusker, Elizabeth; Jankovic, Joseph; Singer, Carlos; Sanchez-Ramos, Juan; Scott, Burton; Suchowersky, Oksana; Factor, Stewart A; Higgins, Donald S; Molho, Eric; Revilla, Fredy; Caviness, John N; Friedman, Joseph H; Perlmutter, Joel S; Feigin, Andrew; Anderson, Karen; Rodriguez, Ramon; McFarland, Nikolaus R; Margolis, Russell L; Farbman, Eric S; Raymond, Lynn A; Suski, Valerie; Kostyk, Sandra; Colcher, Amy; Seeberger, Lauren; Epping, Eric; Esmail, Sherali; Diaz, Nancy; Fung, Wai Lun Alan; Diamond, Alan; Frank, Samuel; Hanna, Philip; Hermanowicz, Neal; Dure, Leon S; Cudkowicz, Merit

    2017-01-10

    To test the hypothesis that chronic treatment of early-stage Huntington disease (HD) with high-dose coenzyme Q10 (CoQ) will slow the progressive functional decline of HD. We performed a multicenter randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Patients with early-stage HD (n = 609) were enrolled at 48 sites in the United States, Canada, and Australia from 2008 to 2012. Patients were randomized to receive either CoQ 2,400 mg/d or matching placebo, then followed for 60 months. The primary outcome variable was the change from baseline to month 60 in Total Functional Capacity score (for patients who survived) combined with time to death (for patients who died) analyzed using a joint-rank analysis approach. An interim analysis for futility revealed a conditional power of <5% for the primary analysis, prompting premature conclusion in July 2014. No statistically significant differences were seen between treatment groups for the primary or secondary outcome measures. CoQ was generally safe and well-tolerated throughout the study. These data do not justify use of CoQ as a treatment to slow functional decline in HD. NCT00608881. This article provides Class I evidence that CoQ does not slow the progressive functional decline of patients with HD. © 2016 American Academy of Neurology.

  16. Compounds acting at the endocannabinoid and/or endovanilloid systems reduce hyperkinesia in a rat model of Huntington's disease

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Lastres‐Becker, Isabel; De Miguel, Rosario; De Petrocellis, Luciano; Makriyannis, Alexandros; Di Marzo, Vincenzo; Fernández‐Ruiz, Javier

    2003-01-01

    ...‐uptake process, which also has affinity for the vanilloid VR1 receptors, is able to reduce hyperkinesia, and causes recovery from neurochemical deficits, in a rat model of Huntington's disease (HD...

  17. Failure to confirm influence of methyltetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) polymorphisms on age at onset of Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansen, Wiebke; Saft, Carsten; Andrich, Jürgen; Müller, Thomas; Wieczorek, Stefan; Epplen, Jörg T; Arning, Larissa

    2005-12-22

    Huntington disease (HD) is a fully penetrant, autosomal dominantly inherited disorder associated with abnormal expansions of a stretch of perfect CAG repeats in the 5' part of the IT15 gene. The number of repeat units is highly predictive for the age at onset (AO) of the disorder. But AO is only modestly correlated with repeat length when intermediate HD expansions are considered. Recently, suggestive association has been reported between a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP; rs1801131, also known as A1298C) in the methyltetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) gene and AO of HD. 5,10-MTHFR is a key enzyme in the folate metabolism, diverting metabolites toward methylation reactions or nucleotide synthesis. Using part of a previously established study cohort plus additional patients and appropriate statistical methods, we reinvestigated two polymorphisms in the MTHFR gene, C677T and A1298C, as well as their association with AO in 167 HD patients. There was no statistically significant impact on AO for HD patients, neither of MTHFR SNPs nor of the combinations thereof. Contrary to previously described evidence the A1298C polymorphism in the MTHFR gene does not appear to modulate AO of HD patients.

  18. Failure to confirm influence of Methyltetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR polymorphisms on age at onset of Huntington disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wieczorek Stefan

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Huntington disease (HD is a fully penetrant, autosomal dominantly inherited disorder associated with abnormal expansions of a stretch of perfect CAG repeats in the 5' part of the IT15 gene. The number of repeat units is highly predictive for the age at onset (AO of the disorder. But AO is only modestly correlated with repeat length when intermediate HD expansions are considered. Recently, suggestive association has been reported between a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP; rs1801131, also known as A1298C in the methyltetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR gene and AO of HD. 5,10-MTHFR is a key enzyme in the folate metabolism, diverting metabolites toward methylation reactions or nucleotide synthesis. Using part of a previously established study cohort plus additional patients and appropriate statistical methods, we reinvestigated two polymorphisms in the MTHFR gene, C677T and A1298C, as well as their association with AO in 167 HD patients. Results There was no statistically significant impact on AO for HD patients, neither of MTHFR SNPs nor of the combinations thereof. Conclusion Contrary to previously described evidence the A1298C polymorphism in the MTHFR gene does not appear to modulate AO of HD patients.

  19. Deficient Rab11 activity underlies glucose hypometabolism in primary neurons of Huntington's disease mice

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li, Xueyi, E-mail: xli12@partners.org [Department of Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Charlestown, MA 02129 (United States); Valencia, Antonio; McClory, Hollis; Sapp, Ellen; Kegel, Kimberly B. [Department of Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Charlestown, MA 02129 (United States); DiFiglia, Marian, E-mail: difiglia@helix.mgh.harvard.edu [Department of Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Charlestown, MA 02129 (United States)

    2012-05-18

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Primary Huntington's disease neurons are impaired in taking up glucose. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Rab11 modulates glucose uptake in neurons. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Increasing Rab11 activity attenuates the glucose uptake defect in disease neurons. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer We provide a novel mechanism for glucose hypometabolism in Huntington's disease. -- Abstract: Huntington's disease (HD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the huntingtin gene. Positron emission tomography studies have revealed a decline in glucose metabolism in the brain of patients with HD by a mechanism that has not been established. We examined glucose utilization in embryonic primary cortical neurons of wild-type (WT) and HD knock-in mice, which have 140 CAG repeats inserted in the endogenous mouse huntingtin gene (HD{sup 140Q/140Q}). Primary HD{sup 140Q/140Q} cortical neurons took up significantly less glucose than did WT neurons. Expression of permanently inactive and permanently active forms of Rab11 correspondingly altered glucose uptake in WT neurons, suggesting that normal activity of Rab11 is needed for neuronal uptake of glucose. It is known that Rab11 activity is diminished in HD{sup 140Q/140Q} neurons. Expression of dominant active Rab11 to enhance the activity of Rab11 normalized glucose uptake in HD{sup 140Q/140Q} neurons. These results suggest that deficient activity of Rab11 is a novel mechanism for glucose hypometabolism in HD.

  20. American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics Standards and Guidelines for Clinical Genetics Laboratories, 2014 edition: technical standards and guidelines for Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bean, Lora; Bayrak-Toydemir, Pinar

    2014-12-01

    Huntington disease is an autosomal-dominant neurodegenerative disease of mid-life onset caused by expansion of a polymorphic trinucleotide (CAG) repeat. Variable penetrance for alleles carrying 36-39 repeats has been noted, but the disease appears fully penetrant when the repeat numbers are >40. An abnormal CAG repeat may expand, contract, or be stably transmitted when passed from parent to child. Assays used to diagnose Huntington disease must be optimized to ensure the accurate and unambiguous quantitation of CAG repeat length. This document provides an overview of Huntington disease and methodological considerations for Huntington disease testing. Examples of laboratory reports are also included.

  1. Witchcraft and Huntington's disease: a salutary history of societal and medical stigmatisation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loi, Samantha; Chiu, Edmond

    2012-10-01

    This paper examines the notions that psychiatry can be greatly influenced by what society considers as 'normal', and that psychiatric thoughts and beliefs ebb and flow according to history and the social and cultural values of the time. As part of the medical profession, psychiatrists have much power in determining treatment and outcomes for patients. Unfortunately, this also means psychiatry has also been involved with the darker aspects of humanity, such as during the Nazi regime, and the abuse of patients' human rights. Huntington's disease (HD) is a neuropsychiatric illness from which observation and little knowledge reported by the medical profession spanned decades of incorrect and sensationalised documentation, that was also influenced by the values of the time. Such was the atmosphere of society during this period that the ideas and notions regarding HD disseminated by the respected medical profession were believed and accepted as fact by the general population and other professions, who would have been ignorant of any other contrary information. We need to be aware of social and cultural values as these can influence our understanding of diagnoses and treatments of our patients.

  2. Huntington's disease: current epidemiology and pharmacological management in UK primary care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sackley, Catherine; Hoppitt, Thomas J; Calvert, Melanie; Gill, Paramjit; Eaton, Benjamin; Yao, Guiqing; Pall, Hardev

    2011-01-01

    Recent debate suggests Huntington's disease (HD) may be more prevalent than previously reported. In addition, relatively little is known about current disease management. This study aims to provide epidemiological data and describe the pharmacological management of HD in the United Kingdom. A primary care research database was accessed to identify incident and prevalent HD cases between January 1, 2004, and December 31, 2008. Patients with Read codes denoting a definite diagnosis or possible diagnosis, and undiagnosed patients with a positive family history were identified. A subset of patients with a definite diagnosis and prescribed medication indicating symptom onset was also identified. Epidemiological data were estimated. Pharmacological prescriptions to HD patients from 2004 to 2008 were identified, and prescription frequencies were grouped according to the British National Formulary categories. HD incidence estimates ranged from 0.44 to 0.78 per 100,000 person-years, and HD prevalence ranged from 5.96 to 6.54 per 100,000 of the population. Forty-four percent of pharmacological prescriptions targeted the central nervous system. Nearly half of the HD patients were prescribed antidepressants, and over 40% were prescribed analgesics. Although prevalence estimates fell short of figures suggested in recent debate, it is feasible that the true prevalence may be much higher than previously reported. Pharmacological management appears to rely heavily on central nervous system drugs and nutrition support. Many of these drugs are prescribed to HD patients for reasons other than the medication's primary use. Further work is required to evaluate the impact of alternative management strategies, such as therapist intervention, counselling, and organisation support, on the patients' quality of life. Copyright © 2011 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  3. Time perception impairment in early-to-moderate stages of Huntington's disease is related to memory deficits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Righi, Stefania; Galli, Luca; Paganini, Marco; Bertini, Elisabetta; Viggiano, Maria Pia; Piacentini, Silvia

    2016-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) primarily affects striatum and prefrontal dopaminergic circuits which are fundamental neural correlates of the timekeeping mechanism. The few studies on HD mainly investigated motor timing performance in second durations. The present work explored time perception in early-to-moderate symptomatic HD patients for seconds and milliseconds with the aim to clarify which component of the scalar expectancy theory (SET) is mainly responsible for HD timing defect. Eleven HD patients were compared to 11 controls employing two separate temporal bisection tasks in second and millisecond ranges. Our results revealed the same time perception deficits for seconds and milliseconds in HD patients. Time perception impairment in early-to-moderate stages of Huntington's disease is related to memory deficits. Furthermore, both the non-systematical defect of temporal sensitivity and the main impairment of timing performance in the extreme value of the psychophysical curves suggested an HD deficit in the memory component of the SET. This result was further confirmed by the significant correlations between time perception performance and long-term memory test scores. Our findings added important preliminary data for both a deeper comprehension of HD time-keeping deficits and possible implications on neuro-rehabilitation practices.

  4. Reduction in mitochondrial DNA copy number in peripheral leukocytes after onset of Huntington's disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Petersen, Maria Hvidberg; Budtz-Jørgensen, Esben; Sørensen, Sven Asger

    2014-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is an inherited neurodegenerative disorder characterised by movement disorder, cognitive symptoms and psychiatric symptoms with predominantly adult-onset. The mutant huntingtin protein leads to mitochondrial dysfunction in blood leukocytes. This discovery led to the inve......Huntington's disease (HD) is an inherited neurodegenerative disorder characterised by movement disorder, cognitive symptoms and psychiatric symptoms with predominantly adult-onset. The mutant huntingtin protein leads to mitochondrial dysfunction in blood leukocytes. This discovery led...... to the investigation of the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) copy number relative to nuclear DNA (nDNA) in leukocytes from carriers of the HD mutation compared to healthy individuals. We found significantly reduced mtDNA/nDNA in HD mutation carriers compared to controls. A longitudinal study of archive DNA sample pairs from...

  5. Sub-chronic copper pretreatment reduces oxidative damage in an experimental Huntington's disease model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez-Lazcano, Juan Carlos; Montes, Sergio; Sánchez-Mendoza, María Alicia; Rodríguez-Páez, Lorena; Pérez-Neri, Iván; Boll, Marie Catherine; Campos-Arroyo, Hortensia Denise; Ríos, Camilo; Pérez-Severiano, Francisca

    2014-12-01

    Quinolinic acid (QUIN) striatal injection in rat reproduces the main neurochemical features of Huntington's disease (HD), including oxidative damage. In this study, we evaluated the effect of a copper (Cu) supplement in drinking water (90 ppm Cu, 28 days) on the QUIN-induced HD model in the rat. Copper exposure caused no signs of liver toxicity; however, it produced significant Cu accumulation in striatum. It is noteworthy that QUIN also caused increased striatal Cu content; when the supplement was administered to animals with QUIN-injury, an even higher metal striatal accumulation was observed. Cu pre-treatment preserved striatal gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) content, which was reduced by QUIN intrastriatal injection. Similarly, apomorphine-induced circling behavior was reduced in Cu-pretreated QUIN-damaged rats. Metal supplement in drinking water prevented both lipid peroxidation and reactive oxygen species (ROS) formation caused by QUIN in striatum. In Cu-treated groups, superoxide dismutase-1 (SOD1) activity showed a significant increase, while SOD2 activity was slightly enhanced. Although the pathophysiological role for higher Cu levels in patients with HD and in experimental models of the disease is not fully understood, results in the present study suggest that Cu oral intake stimulates anti-oxidant defenses, an effect that may be a potential factor for reducing the progression of HD.

  6. Sleep Physiology Alterations Precede Plethoric Phenotypic Changes in R6/1 Huntington's Disease Mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fanny Lebreton

    Full Text Available In hereditary neurodegenerative Huntington's disease (HD, there exists a growing consideration that sleep and circadian dysregulations may be important symptoms. It is not known, however, whether sleep abnormalities contribute to other behavioral deficits in HD patients and mouse models. To determine the precise chronology for sleep physiology alterations and other sensory, motor, psychiatric and cognitive symptoms of HD, the same R6/1 HD transgenics and their wild-type littermates were recorded monthly for sleep electroencephalogram (EEG together with a wide range of behavioral tests according to a longitudinal plan. We found an early and progressive deterioration of both sleep architecture and EEG brain rhythms in R6/1 mice, which are correlated timely with their spatial working memory impairments. Sleep fragmentation and memory impairments were accompanied by the loss of delta (1-4 Hz power in the transgenic mice, the magnitude of which increased with age and disease progression. These precocious sleep and cognitive impairments were followed by deficits in social behavior, sensory and motor abilities. Our data confirm the existence and importance of sleep physiology alterations in the widely used R6/1 mouse line and highlight their precedence over other plethoric phenotypic changes. The brainwave abnormalities, may represent a novel biomarker and point to innovative therapeutic interventions against HD.

  7. Huntington disease arises from a combinatory toxicity of polyglutamine and copper binding

    OpenAIRE

    Xiao, Guiran; Fan, Qiangwang; Wang, Xiaoxi; Zhou, Bing

    2013-01-01

    The etiology of Huntington disease (HD), a progressive neurodegenerative disorder caused by polyglutamine (polyQ) expansion in huntingtin, is not well clarified. Here using a Drosophila model of HD, we show that altered expression of genes involved in copper metabolism can significantly modulate the HD progression. Dietary copper intervention also modifies HD phenotypes in the fly. Copper reduction dramatically decreases the level of toxic huntingtin levels. Strikingly, substitution of two po...

  8. Minipig Model of Huntington's Disease: H-1 Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy of the Brain

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Jozefovičová, M.; Herynek, V.; Jírů, F.; Dezortová, M.; Juhásová, Jana; Juhás, Štefan; Motlík, Jan; Hájek, M.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 65, č. 1 (2016), s. 155-163 ISSN 0862-8408 R&D Projects: GA TA ČR(CZ) TA01011466; GA MŠk(CZ) 7F14308; GA MŠk ED2.1.00/03.0124 Institutional support: RVO:67985904 Keywords : Huntington´s disease * minipigs * magnetic resonance spectroscopy Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 1.461, year: 2016

  9. Possible role of mitochondrial permeability transition pore in the pathogenesis of Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quintanilla, Rodrigo A; Tapia, Cheril; Pérez, María José

    2017-02-19

    Huntington disease (HD) is a devastating neurological disorder that affects the striatum and cortex of patients. HD patients develop progressive motor dysfunction and psychiatric disturbances with gradual dementia. HD is caused by a pathological expansion of CAG repeats in the huntingtin gene that codifies for a protein called huntingtin (Htt), which principal function is not completely understood. Accumulative evidence shows that this pathological expansion modifies Htt function affecting different neuronal targets, including mitochondrial function which is an important factor that contributes to HD. Interestingly, several groups have shown mitochondrial disturbances including calcium handling defects, depolarization, decrease of mitochondrial transport, ATP reduction, and increase of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in cellular and murine HD models. Systematic analysis of this evidence indicates that a mitochondrial structure, the mitochondrial permeability transition pore (mPTP), could be responsible for these changes that affect mitochondria. The mPTP plays an important role in apoptosis and neurodegeneration. It has also been reported to have some physiological functions in heart development and synaptic communication. In HD, the presence of mutant huntingtin (mHtt) activates this mechanism producing a significant compromise of mitochondrial metabolism and bioenergetics. Considering these findings this review explores the evidence that suggests the important role of mPTP in the mitochondrial impairment induced by mHtt, which leads to calcium derangement and contributes to neuronal dysfunction in HD. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Your misery is no longer my pleasure: Reduced schadenfreude in Huntington's disease families.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baez, Sandra; Santamaría-García, Hernando; Orozco, Janni; Fittipaldi, Sol; García, Adolfo M; Pino, Mariana; Ibáñez, Agustín

    2016-10-01

    Schadenfreude - pleasure at others' misfortunes - has been systematically related to ventral striatum activity. This brain region is affected early in individuals with manifest and pre-manifest Huntington's disease (HD). However, the experience of schadenfreude has not yet been investigated in HD. In this study, 21 manifest HD patients, 19 first-degree asymptomatic relatives, and 23 healthy controls performed an experimental task designed to trigger schadenfreude, envy (another social emotion acting as an affective control condition), and control situations. Both HD patients and first-degree relatives experienced lower schadenfreude in response to others' misfortunes, with no group differences in ratings of envy and control conditions. These results offer unprecedented evidence of a highly specific impairment in reward processing, extending previous reports in manifest and pre-manifest HD individuals. Moreover, these findings suggest that early striatal impairments may be related to reduced feelings of schadenfreude. In sum, our work contributes to the understanding of emotional impairments in early stages of HD, while shedding light on their neural correlates. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Huntington's disease: a randomized, controlled trial using the NMDA-antagonist amantadine.

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    Verhagen Metman, L; Morris, M J; Farmer, C; Gillespie, M; Mosby, K; Wuu, J; Chase, T N

    2002-09-10

    To examine the acute effects of the NMDA receptor antagonist amantadine on motor and cognitive function in Huntington's disease (HD). Chorea in HD and in the levodopa-induced dyskinesias of PD may be clinically indistinguishable. In PD, hyperphosphorylation of NMDA receptors expressed on striatal medium spiny neurons contributes to peak-dose dyskinesias, and drugs that block these receptors can diminish chorea severity. Because these spiny neurons are the primary target of the neurodegenerative process in HD, sensitization of NMDA receptors on residual striatal neurons might also participate in the generation of motor dysfunction in HD. To evaluate this possibility, 24 patients with HD entered a double-blind placebo-controlled crossover study of amantadine with two 2-week arms. Chorea scores were lower with amantadine (usually 400 mg/d) than placebo, with a median reduction in extremity chorea at rest of 36% (p = 0.04) for all 22 evaluable patients and of 56% in the 10 individuals with the highest plasma drug levels. Improvement correlated with plasma amantadine concentrations (p = 0.01) but not CAG repeat length. Parkinsonian rating scores did not worsen and there was no consistent change in cognitive measures. Adverse event profile was benign. Results suggest that NMDA receptor supersensitivity may contribute to the clinical expression of choreiform dyskinesias in HD and that selective antagonists at that site can safely confer palliative benefit.

  12. Dysregulation of Mitochondrial Calcium Signaling and Superoxide Flashes Cause Mitochondrial Genomic DNA Damage in Huntington Disease*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jiu-Qiang; Chen, Qian; Wang, Xianhua; Wang, Qiao-Chu; Wang, Yun; Cheng, He-Ping; Guo, Caixia; Sun, Qinmiao; Chen, Quan; Tang, Tie-Shan

    2013-01-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is an inherited, fatal neurodegenerative disorder characterized by the progressive loss of striatal medium spiny neurons. Indications of oxidative stress are apparent in brain tissues from both HD patients and HD mouse models; however, the origin of this oxidant stress remains a mystery. Here, we used a yeast artificial chromosome transgenic mouse model of HD (YAC128) to investigate the potential connections between dysregulation of cytosolic Ca2+ signaling and mitochondrial oxidative damage in HD cells. We found that YAC128 mouse embryonic fibroblasts exhibit a strikingly higher level of mitochondrial matrix Ca2+ loading and elevated superoxide generation compared with WT cells, indicating that both mitochondrial Ca2+ signaling and superoxide generation are dysregulated in HD cells. The excessive mitochondrial oxidant stress is critically dependent on mitochondrial Ca2+ loading in HD cells, because blocking mitochondrial Ca2+ uptake abolished elevated superoxide generation. Similar results were obtained using neurons from HD model mice and fibroblast cells from HD patients. More importantly, mitochondrial Ca2+ loading in HD cells caused a 2-fold higher level of mitochondrial genomic DNA (mtDNA) damage due to the excessive oxidant generation. This study provides strong evidence to support a new causal link between dysregulated mitochondrial Ca2+ signaling, elevated mitochondrial oxidant stress, and mtDNA damage in HD. Our results also indicate that reducing mitochondrial Ca2+ uptake could be a therapeutic strategy for HD. PMID:23250749

  13. Network topology and functional connectivity disturbances precede the onset of Huntington's disease.

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    Harrington, Deborah L; Rubinov, Mikail; Durgerian, Sally; Mourany, Lyla; Reece, Christine; Koenig, Katherine; Bullmore, Ed; Long, Jeffrey D; Paulsen, Jane S; Rao, Stephen M

    2015-08-01

    Cognitive, motor and psychiatric changes in prodromal Huntington's disease have nurtured the emergent need for early interventions. Preventive clinical trials for Huntington's disease, however, are limited by a shortage of suitable measures that could serve as surrogate outcomes. Measures of intrinsic functional connectivity from resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging are of keen interest. Yet recent studies suggest circumscribed abnormalities in resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging connectivity in prodromal Huntington's disease, despite the spectrum of behavioural changes preceding a manifest diagnosis. The present study used two complementary analytical approaches to examine whole-brain resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging connectivity in prodromal Huntington's disease. Network topology was studied using graph theory and simple functional connectivity amongst brain regions was explored using the network-based statistic. Participants consisted of gene-negative controls (n = 16) and prodromal Huntington's disease individuals (n = 48) with various stages of disease progression to examine the influence of disease burden on intrinsic connectivity. Graph theory analyses showed that global network interconnectivity approximated a random network topology as proximity to diagnosis neared and this was associated with decreased connectivity amongst highly-connected rich-club network hubs, which integrate processing from diverse brain regions. However, functional segregation within the global network (average clustering) was preserved. Functional segregation was also largely maintained at the local level, except for the notable decrease in the diversity of anterior insula intermodular-interconnections (participation coefficient), irrespective of disease burden. In contrast, network-based statistic analyses revealed patterns of weakened frontostriatal connections and strengthened frontal-posterior connections that evolved as disease

  14. Feasibility of computerized working memory training in individuals with Huntington disease.

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    Mahsa Sadeghi

    Full Text Available Huntington disease (HD is associated with a variety of cognitive deficits, with prominent difficulties in working memory (WM. WM deficits are notably compromised in early-onset and prodromal HD patients. This study aimed to determine the feasibility of a computerized WM training program (Cogmed QM, novel to the HD population.Nine patients, aged 26-62, with early stage HD underwent a 25-session (5 days/week for 5 weeks WM training program (Cogmed QM. Training exercises involved the manipulation and storage of verbal and visuospatial information, with difficulty adapted as a function of individual performance. Neuropsychological testing was conducted before and after training, and performance on criterion WM measures (Digit Span and Spatial Span, near-transfer WM measures (Symbol Span and Auditory WM, and control measures were evaluated. Post-training interviews about patient experience were thematically analyzed using NVivo software.Seven of nine patients demonstrated adherence to the training and completed all sessions within the recommended timeframe of 5 weeks. All adherent patients showed improvement on the Cogmed tasks as defined by the Improvement Index (M = 22.17, SD = 8.84, range = 13-36. All adherent patients reported that they found training helpful (n = 7, and almost all felt that their memory improved (n = 6. Participants also expressed that the training was difficult, sometimes frustrating, and time consuming.This pilot study provides support for feasibility of computerized WM training in early-stage patients with HD. Results suggest that HD patients perceive benefits of intensive WM training, though a full-scale and controlled intervention project is needed to understand the size of the effect and reliability of changes over time.ClinicalTrials.gov, Registry number NCT02926820.

  15. Neurofilament light protein in blood as a potential biomarker of neurodegeneration in Huntington's disease: a retrospective cohort analysis.

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    Byrne, Lauren M; Rodrigues, Filipe B; Blennow, Kaj; Durr, Alexandra; Leavitt, Blair R; Roos, Raymund A C; Scahill, Rachael I; Tabrizi, Sarah J; Zetterberg, Henrik; Langbehn, Douglas; Wild, Edward J

    2017-08-01

    Blood biomarkers of neuronal damage could facilitate clinical management of and therapeutic development for Huntington's disease. We investigated whether neurofilament light protein NfL (also known as NF-L) in blood is a potential prognostic marker of neurodegeneration in patients with Huntington's disease. We did a retrospective analysis of healthy controls and carriers of CAG expansion mutations in HTT participating in the 3-year international TRACK-HD study. We studied associations between NfL concentrations in plasma and clinical and MRI neuroimaging findings, namely cognitive function, motor function, and brain volume (global and regional). We used random effects models to analyse cross-sectional associations at each study visit and to assess changes from baseline, with and without adjustment for age and CAG repeat count. In an independent London-based cohort of 37 participants (23 HTT mutation carriers and 14 controls), we further assessed whether concentrations of NfL in plasma correlated with those in CSF. Baseline and follow-up plasma samples were available from 97 controls and 201 individuals carrying HTT mutations. Mean concentrations of NfL in plasma at baseline were significantly higher in HTT mutation carriers than in controls (3·63 [SD 0·54] log pg/mL vs 2·68 [0·52] log pg/mL, pdisease stage to the next. At any given timepoint, NfL concentrations in plasma correlated with clinical and MRI findings. In longitudinal analyses, baseline NfL concentration in plasma also correlated significantly with subsequent decline in cognition (symbol-digit modality test r=-0·374, pHuntington's disease, NfL concentration in plasma at baseline was associated with subsequent clinical onset during the 3-year follow-up period (hazard ratio 3·29 per log pg/mL, 95% CI 1·48-7·34, p=0·0036). Concentrations of NfL in CSF and plasma were correlated in mutation carriers (r=0·868, pdisease onset and progression in Huntington's disease. Medical Research Council, Glaxo

  16. Advances in the understanding of early Huntington's disease using the functional imaging techniques of PET and SPET

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    Andrews, T.C.; Brooks, D.J. [MRC Cyclotron Unit, Imperial College School of Medicine, Hammersmith Hospital, Du Cane Rd, London (United Kingdom)

    1998-12-01

    The functional imaging techniques of positron emission tomography (PET) and single photon emission tomography (SPET) have been used to study regional brain function in Huntington's disease (HD) in vivo. Reduced striatal glucose metabolism and dopamine receptor binding are evident in all symptomatic HD patients and in {approx}50% of asymptomatic adult mutation carriers. These characteristics correlate with clinical measures of disease severity. Reduced cortical glucose metabolism and dopamine receptor binding, together with reduced striatal and cortical opioid receptor binding, have also been demonstrated in symptomatic patients with HD. Repeat PET measures of striatal function have been used to monitor the progression of this disease objectively. In the future, functional imaging will provide a valuable way of assessing the efficacy of both fetal striatal cell implants and putative neuroprotective agents, such as nerve growth factors. (Copyright (c) 1998 Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam. All rights reserved.)

  17. Diffusion tensor imaging in Huntington's disease reveals distinct patterns of white matter degeneration associated with motor and cognitive deficits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bohanna, India; Georgiou-Karistianis, Nellie; Sritharan, Anusha; Asadi, Hamed; Johnston, Leigh; Churchyard, Andrew; Egan, Gary

    2011-09-01

    White matter (WM) degeneration is an important feature of Huntington's disease (HD) neuropathology. To investigate WM degeneration we used Diffusion Tensor Imaging and Tract-Based Spatial Statistics to compare Fractional Anisotropy, Mean Diffusivity (MD), parallel diffusivity and perpendicular diffusivity (λ⊥) in WM throughout the whole brain in 17 clinically diagnosed HD patients and 16 matched controls. Significant WM diffusivity abnormalities were identified primarily in the corpus callosum (CC) and external/extreme capsules in HD patients compared to controls. Significant correlations were observed between motor symptoms and MD in the CC body, and between global cognitive impairment and λ⊥ in the CC genu. Probabilistic tractography from these regions revealed degeneration of functionally relevant interhemispheric WM tracts. Our findings suggest that WM degeneration within interhemispheric pathways plays an important role in the deterioration of cognitive and motor function in HD patients, and that improved understanding of WM pathology early in the disease is required.

  18. Identification of genetic variants associated with Huntington's disease progression: a genome-wide association study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moss, Davina J Hensman; Pardiñas, Antonio F; Langbehn, Douglas; Lo, Kitty; Leavitt, Blair R; Roos, Raymund; Durr, Alexandra; Mead, Simon; Holmans, Peter; Jones, Lesley; Tabrizi, Sarah J

    2017-09-01

    Huntington's disease is caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the huntingtin gene, HTT. Age at onset has been used as a quantitative phenotype in genetic analysis looking for Huntington's disease modifiers, but is hard to define and not always available. Therefore, we aimed to generate a novel measure of disease progression and to identify genetic markers associated with this progression measure. We generated a progression score on the basis of principal component analysis of prospectively acquired longitudinal changes in motor, cognitive, and imaging measures in the 218 indivduals in the TRACK-HD cohort of Huntington's disease gene mutation carriers (data collected 2008-11). We generated a parallel progression score using data from 1773 previously genotyped participants from the European Huntington's Disease Network REGISTRY study of Huntington's disease mutation carriers (data collected 2003-13). We did a genome-wide association analyses in terms of progression for 216 TRACK-HD participants and 1773 REGISTRY participants, then a meta-analysis of these results was undertaken. Longitudinal motor, cognitive, and imaging scores were correlated with each other in TRACK-HD participants, justifying use of a single, cross-domain measure of disease progression in both studies. The TRACK-HD and REGISTRY progression measures were correlated with each other (r=0·674), and with age at onset (TRACK-HD, r=0·315; REGISTRY, r=0·234). The meta-analysis of progression in TRACK-HD and REGISTRY gave a genome-wide significant signal (p=1·12 × 10(-10)) on chromosome 5 spanning three genes: MSH3, DHFR, and MTRNR2L2. The genes in this locus were associated with progression in TRACK-HD (MSH3 p=2·94 × 10(-8)DHFR p=8·37 × 10(-7) MTRNR2L2 p=2·15 × 10(-9)) and to a lesser extent in REGISTRY (MSH3 p=9·36 × 10(-4)DHFR p=8·45 × 10(-4)MTRNR2L2 p=1·20 × 10(-3)). The lead single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in TRACK-HD (rs557874766) was genome

  19. Do I misconstrue? Sarcasm detection, emotion recognition, and theory of mind in Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larsen, Ida Unmack; Vinther-Jensen, Tua; Gade, Anders; Nielsen, Jørgen Erik; Vogel, Asmus

    2016-02-01

    Emotion recognition has been widely studied in Huntington disease (HD), but only a few studies have investigated more complex social cognition and, when so, exclusively in manifest HD. The present study sought to investigate social-cognitive functions in a large, consecutive cohort of premanifest and manifest HD gene expansion carriers using tests assessing sarcasm detection, theory of mind (ToM), and emotion recognition. Fifty manifest, 50 premanifest HD gene expansion carriers, and 39 at risk gene expansion negative healthy controls were included. All participants were tested with sarcasm detection, ToM, and emotion recognition tasks. Between-group comparisons of test performances and correlation analyses of test performances and disease burden scores were made. Group comparisons showed significant differences in performances on the social-cognitive tests between manifest HD gene expansion carriers and healthy controls, but differences in performances between premanifest HD gene expansion carriers and healthy controls were not statistically significant. Correlation analysis showed that the worse test performances were associated with higher disease burden scores in all HD gene expansion carriers. Our findings support a theory of impaired social-cognitive functions in the early stages of HD. Test performances decreased with increasing disease burden in all HD gene expansion carriers, suggesting that social-cognitive tests may be useful for tracking disease progression. Simple emotion recognition tasks are just as sensitive for measuring social-cognitive deficits as more complex measures, but knowledge of the quality of social-cognitive impairments in HD can be of great importance to both patients and caregivers. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved.

  20. The P42 peptide and Peptide-based therapies for Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marelli, Cecilia; Maschat, Florence

    2016-03-17

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a progressive neurodegenerative hereditary disease clinically characterised by the presence of involuntary movements, behavioural problems and cognitive decline. The disease-onset is usually between 30 and 50 years of age. HD is a rare disorder affecting approximately 1.3 in 10,000 people in the European Union. It is caused by an expanded CAG repeat in the first exon of the Huntingtin (HTT) gene, leading to an abnormal form of the Huntingtin protein (Htt) (polyQHtt), containing N-terminus, enlarged polyglutamine strands of variable length that stick together to form aggregates and nuclear inclusions in the damaged brain cells. Treatments currently used for Huntington's disease are symptomatic and aimed at temporally relieving the symptoms of the disease; although some promising therapies are on study, there is no drug capable of stopping disease progression either in the form of delaying onset or slowing disability progression. The utilization of peptides interacting with polyQ stretches or with Htt protein to prevent misfolding and aggregation of the expanded polyQ protein is a fascinating idea, because of low potential toxicity and ability to target very initial steps in the pathophysiological cascade of the disease, such as aggregation or cleavage process. Indeed, several therapeutic peptides have been developed and were found to significantly slow down the progression of symptoms in experimental models of Huntington's disease. This review is essentially focusing on the latest development concerning peptide strategy. In particular, we focused on a 23aa peptide P42, which is a part of the Htt protein. It is expected to work principally by preventing the abnormal Htt protein from sticking together, thereby preventing pathological consequences of aggregation and improving the symptoms of the disease. In the meantime, as P42 is part of the Htt protein, some therapeutic properties might be linked to the physiological actions of the

  1. Huntington disease arises from a combinatory toxicity of polyglutamine and copper binding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao, Guiran; Fan, Qiangwang; Wang, Xiaoxi; Zhou, Bing

    2013-09-10

    Huntington disease (HD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder caused by dominant polyglutamine (polyQ) expansion within the N terminus of huntingtin (Htt) protein. Abnormal metal accumulation in the striatum of HD patients has been reported for many years, but a causative relationship has not yet been established. Furthermore, if metal is indeed involved in HD, the underlying mechanism needs to be explored. Here using a Drosophila model of HD, wherein Htt exon1 with expanded polyQ (Htt exon1-polyQ) is introduced, we show that altered expression of genes involved in copper metabolism significantly modulates the HD progression. Intervention of dietary copper levels also modifies HD phenotypes in the fly. Copper reduction to a large extent decreases the level of oligomerized and aggregated Htt. Strikingly, substitution of two potential copper-binding residues of Htt, Met8 and His82, completely dissociates the copper-intensifying toxicity of Htt exon1-polyQ. Our results therefore indicate HD entails two levels of toxicity: the copper-facilitated protein aggregation as conferred by a direct copper binding in the exon1 and the copper-independent polyQ toxicity. The existence of these two parallel pathways converging into Htt toxicity also suggests that an ideal HD therapy would be a multipronged approach that takes both these actions into consideration.

  2. Results of the citalopram to enhance cognition in Huntington disease trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beglinger, Leigh J; Adams, William H; Langbehn, Douglas; Fiedorowicz, Jess G; Jorge, Ricardo; Biglan, Kevin; Caviness, John; Olson, Blair; Robinson, Robert G; Kieburtz, Karl; Paulsen, Jane S

    2014-03-01

    The objective of this study was to evaluate citalopram for executive functioning in Huntington's disease (HD). The study was randomized, double-blind, and placebo-controlled. Thirty-three adults with HD, cognitive complaints, and no depression (Hamilton Depression [HAM-D] rating scale ≤ 12) were administered citalopram 20 mg or placebo (7 visits, 20 weeks), with practice and placebo run-ins. The primary outcome was change in executive functioning. The intent to treat analysis was controlled for practice effects, comparing visits 1 and 2 to visits 5 and 6 for citalopram versus placebo. There were no significant benefits on the executive function composite (treatment-placebo mean difference -0.167; 95% confidence interval [CI], -0.361 to 0.028; P = .092). Citalopram participants showed improved clinician-rated depression symptoms on the HAM-D (t = -2.02; P = 0.05). There were no group differences on motor ratings, self-reported executive functions, psychiatric symptoms, or functional status. There was no evidence that short-term treatment with citalopram improved executive functions in HD. Despite excluding patients with active depression, participants on citalopram showed improved mood, raising the possibility of efficacy for subsyndromal depression in HD. © 2013 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society.

  3. Altered hypothalamic protein expression in a rat model of Huntington's disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wei-na Cong

    Full Text Available Huntington's disease (HD is a neurodegenerative disorder, which is characterized by progressive motor impairment and cognitive alterations. Changes in energy metabolism, neuroendocrine function, body weight, euglycemia, appetite function, and circadian rhythm can also occur. It is likely that the locus of these alterations is the hypothalamus. We used the HD transgenic (tg rat model bearing 51 CAG repeats, which exhibits similar HD symptomology as HD patients to investigate hypothalamic function. We conducted detailed hypothalamic proteome analyses and also measured circulating levels of various metabolic hormones and lipids in pre-symptomatic and symptomatic animals. Our results demonstrate that there are significant alterations in HD rat hypothalamic protein expression such as glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP, heat shock protein-70, the oxidative damage protein glutathione peroxidase (Gpx4, glycogen synthase1 (Gys1 and the lipid synthesis enzyme acylglycerol-3-phosphate O-acyltransferase 1 (Agpat1. In addition, there are significant alterations in various circulating metabolic hormones and lipids in pre-symptomatic animals including, insulin, leptin, triglycerides and HDL, before any motor or cognitive alterations are apparent. These early metabolic and lipid alterations are likely prodromal signs of hypothalamic dysfunction. Gaining a greater understanding of the hypothalamic and metabolic alterations that occur in HD, could lead to the development of novel therapeutics for early interventional treatment of HD.

  4. The targetable A1 Huntington disease haplotype has distinct Amerindian and European origins in Latin America.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kay, Chris; Tirado-Hurtado, Indira; Cornejo-Olivas, Mario; Collins, Jennifer A; Wright, Galen; Inca-Martinez, Miguel; Veliz-Otani, Diego; Ketelaar, Maria E; Slama, Ramy A; Ross, Colin J; Mazzetti, Pilar; Hayden, Michael R

    2017-02-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is a dominant neurodegenerative disorder caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the Huntingtin (HTT) gene. HD occurs worldwide, but the causative mutation is found on different HTT haplotypes in distinct ethnic groups. In Latin America, HD is thought to have European origins, but indigenous Amerindian ancestry has not been investigated. Here, we report dense HTT haplotypes in 62 mestizo Peruvian HD families, 17 HD families from across Latin America, and 42 controls of defined Peruvian Amerindian ethnicity to determine the origin of HD in populations of admixed Amerindian and European descent. HD in Peru occurs most frequently on the A1 HTT haplotype (73%), as in Europe, but on an unexpected indigenous variant also found in Amerindian controls. This Amerindian A1 HTT haplotype predominates over the European A1 variant among geographically disparate Latin American controls and in HD families from across Latin America, supporting an indigenous origin of the HD mutation in mestizo American populations. We also show that a proportion of HD mutations in Peru occur on a C1 HTT haplotype of putative Amerindian origin (14%). The majority of HD mutations in Latin America may therefore occur on haplotypes of Amerindian ancestry rather than on haplotypes resulting from European admixture. Despite the distinct ethnic ancestry of Amerindian and European A1 HTT, alleles on the parent A1 HTT haplotype allow for development of identical antisense molecules to selectively silence the HD mutation in the greatest proportion of patients in both Latin American and European populations.

  5. Decreased neuronal nitric oxide synthase messenger RNA and somatostatin messenger RNA in the striatum of Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norris, P J; Waldvogel, H J; Faull, R L; Love, D R; Emson, P C

    1996-06-01

    The cellular abundance of neuronal nitric oxide synthase and somatostatin messenger RNAs was compared in the caudate nucleus, putamen and sensorimotor cortex of Huntington's disease and control cases. Neuronal nitric oxide synthase messenger RNA was significantly decreased in the caudate nucleus and putamen, but not in the sensorimotor cortex in Huntington's disease; the decrease in neuronal nitric oxide synthase messenger RNA became more pronounced with the severity of the disease. Somatostatin gene expression was significantly decreased in the dorsal putamen in Huntington's disease, but was essentially unchanged in all other regions examined. The density of neurons expressing detectable levels of neuronal nitric oxide synthase messenger RNA was reduced in the striata of Huntington's disease cases with advanced pathology; the density of neurons expressing detectable levels of somatostatin messenger RNA was similar in control and Huntington's disease cases. Neuropeptide Y-, somatostatin- and NADPH-diaphorase-positive neurons were consistently present throughout the striatum across all the grades of the disease. Neuronal nitric oxide synthase and NADPH-diaphorase activity (a histochemical marker for nitric oxide synthase-containing neurons) co-localize with somatostatin and neuropeptide Y in interneurons in the human striatum and cerebral cortex. Although the neurodegeneration associated with Huntington's disease is most evident in the striatum (particularly the dorsal regions), neuronal nitric oxide synthase/neuropeptide Y/somatostatin interneurons are relatively spared. Nitric oxide released by neuronal nitric oxide synthase-containing neurons may mediate glutamate-induced excitotoxic cell death, a mechanism proposed to be instrumental in causing the neurodegeneration seen in Huntington's disease. The results described here suggest that although the population of interneurons containing somatostatin, neuropeptide Y and neuronal nitric oxide synthase do survive in

  6. Survival End Points for Huntington Disease Trials Prior to a Motor Diagnosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Long, Jeffrey D; Mills, James A; Leavitt, Blair R; Durr, Alexandra; Roos, Raymund A; Stout, Julie C; Reilmann, Ralf; Landwehrmeyer, Bernhard; Gregory, Sarah; Scahill, Rachael I; Langbehn, Douglas R; Tabrizi, Sarah J

    2017-11-01

    Predictive genetic testing in Huntington disease (HD) enables therapeutic trials in HTT gene expansion mutation carriers prior to a motor diagnosis. Progression-free survival (PFS) is the composite of a motor diagnosis or a progression event, whichever comes first. To determine if PFS provides feasible sample sizes for trials with mutation carriers who have not yet received a motor diagnosis. This study uses data from the 2-phase, longitudinal cohort studies called Track and from a longitudinal cohort study called the Cooperative Huntington Observational Research Trial (COHORT). Track had 167 prediagnosis mutation carriers and 156 noncarriers, whereas COHORT had 366 prediagnosis mutation carriers and noncarriers. Track studies were conducted at 4 sites in 4 countries (Canada, France, England, and the Netherlands) from which data were collected from January 17, 2008, through November 17, 2014. The COHORT was conducted at 38 sites in 3 countries (Australia, Canada, and the United States) from which data were collected from February 14, 2006, through December 31, 2009. Results from the Track data were externally validated with data from the COHORT. The required sample size was estimated for a 2-arm prediagnosis clinical trial. Data analysis took place from May 1, 2016, to June 10, 2017. The primary end point is PFS. Huntington disease progression events are defined for the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale total motor score, total functional capacity, symbol digit modalities test, and Stroop word test. Of Track's 167 prediagnosis mutation carriers, 93 (55.6%) were women, and the mean (SD) age was 40.06 (8.92) years; of the 156 noncarriers, 87 (55.7%) were women, and the mean (SD) age was 45.58 (10.30) years. Of the 366 COHORT participants, 229 (62.5%) were women and the mean (SD) age was 42.21 (12.48) years. The PFS curves of the Track mutation carriers showed good external validity with the COHORT mutation carriers after adjusting for initial progression. For

  7. Joint recognition-expression impairment of facial emotions in Huntington's disease despite intact understanding of feelings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trinkler, Iris; Cleret de Langavant, Laurent; Bachoud-Lévi, Anne-Catherine

    2013-02-01

    Patients with Huntington's disease (HD), a neurodegenerative disorder that causes major motor impairments, also show cognitive and emotional deficits. While their deficit in recognising emotions has been explored in depth, little is known about their ability to express emotions and understand their feelings. If these faculties were impaired, patients might not only mis-read emotion expressions in others but their own emotions might be mis-interpreted by others as well, or thirdly, they might have difficulties understanding and describing their feelings. We compared the performance of recognition and expression of facial emotions in 13 HD patients with mild motor impairments but without significant bucco-facial abnormalities, and 13 controls matched for age and education. Emotion recognition was investigated in a forced-choice recognition test (FCR), and emotion expression by filming participants while they mimed the six basic emotional facial expressions (anger, disgust, fear, surprise, sadness and joy) to the experimenter. The films were then segmented into 60 stimuli per participant and four external raters performed a FCR on this material. Further, we tested understanding of feelings in self (alexithymia) and others (empathy) using questionnaires. Both recognition and expression were impaired across different emotions in HD compared to controls and recognition and expression scores were correlated. By contrast, alexithymia and empathy scores were very similar in HD and controls. This might suggest that emotion deficits in HD might be tied to the expression itself. Because similar emotion recognition-expression deficits are also found in Parkinson's Disease and vascular lesions of the striatum, our results further confirm the importance of the striatum for emotion recognition and expression, while access to the meaning of feelings relies on a different brain network, and is spared in HD. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Ideomotor limb apraxia in Huntington's disease: a case-control study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hödl, Anna K; Hödl, Elfriede; Otti, Daniela V; Herranhof, Brigitte; Ille, Rottraut; Bonelli, Raphael M

    2008-03-01

    Ideomotor limb apraxia is the disturbance of planning and of execution of motor activity,which is not caused by a dysfunction of the motor or sensory nervous system. Apraxia is a diagnostic criterion in dementialike Alzheimer's disease. However, this symptom may also occur in dementia with subcortical lesions like Huntington's disease (HD), a hereditary, devastating neurodegenerative disease leading to neurological and psychiatric dysfunction. The aim of our study is to determine the correlation between the occurrence of ideomotor limb apraxia and neuropsychological deficits in HD. To assess the correlation between apraxia and neuropsychological abilities in HD, 41 patients with HD and 33 age- and sex-matched controls were examined. The De Renzi test for apraxia and an apraxia test battery containing tests of i) imitation of meaningless gestures of hands, ii) imitation of meaningless gestures of fingers, iii) performance of meaningful gestures on demand, and iv) pantomime of tool use were used to assess apraxia. Moreover, neuropsychological function was rated by the Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE), the Rey Complex Figure Memory Test, the Trail Making Test A and B, the California Verbal Learning Test (German version), the Stroop Color and Word Test, the Controlled Oral Word Association Test, and the Mehrfachwahl- Wortschatz-Intelligenztest for measuring verbal intelligence. Motor function was assessed in all HD patients by the Unified HD Rating Scale (UHDRS), rating oculomotor and orolingual function, fine motor tasks, parkinsonism, dystonia, chorea and statics and gait. Apraxic HD patients showed worse results than non-apraxic HD patients in three items of the Rey Complex Figure Memory Test (Organisation, short-term and longterm memory), but not in other assessed neuropsychological tests. In assessment of meaningful gestures on demand 39.3% of HD patients were apraxic, in assessment of pantomime of tool use 67.9% of HD patients showed apraxia. Patients with HD

  9. Theory of mind and empathy in preclinical and clinical Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adjeroud, Najia; Besnard, Jérémy; El Massioui, Nicole; Verny, Christophe; Prudean, Adriana; Scherer, Clarisse; Gohier, Bénédicte; Bonneau, Dominique; Allain, Philippe

    2016-01-01

    We investigated cognitive and affective Theory of Mind (ToM) and empathy in patients with premanifest and manifest Huntington's disease (HD). The relationship between ToM performance and executive skills was also examined. Sixteen preclinical and 23 clinical HD patients, and 39 healthy subjects divided into 2 control groups were given a French adaptation of the Yoni test (Shamay-Tsoory, S.G., Aharon-Peretz, J. (2007). Dissociable prefrontal networks for cognitive and affective theory of mind: a lesion study. Neuropsychologia, 45(3), 3054-67) that examines first- and second-order cognitive and affective ToM processing in separate conditions with a physical control condition. Participants were also given questionnaires of empathy and cognitive tests which mainly assessed executive functions (inhibition and mental flexibility). Clinical HD patients made significantly more errors than their controls in the first- and second-order cognitive and affective ToM conditions of the Yoni task, but exhibited no empathy deficits. However, there was no evidence that ToM impairment was related to cognitive deficits in these patients. Preclinical HD patients were unimpaired in ToM tasks and empathy measures compared with their controls. Our results are consistent with the idea that impaired affective and cognitive mentalizing emerges with the clinical manifestation of HD, but is not necessarily part of the preclinical stage. Furthermore, these impairments appear independent of executive dysfunction and empathy. © The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  10. Metabolic and transcriptomic analysis of Huntington's disease model reveal changes in intracellular glucose levels and related genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaves, Gepoliano; Özel, Rıfat Emrah; Rao, Namrata V; Hadiprodjo, Hana; Costa, Yvonne Da; Tokuno, Zachary; Pourmand, Nader

    2017-08-01

    Huntington's Disease (HD) is a neurodegenerative disorder caused by an expansion in a CAG-tri-nucleotide repeat that introduces a poly-glutamine stretch into the huntingtin protein (mHTT). Mutant huntingtin (mHTT) has been associated with several phenotypes including mood disorders and depression. Additionally, HD patients are known to be more susceptible to type II diabetes mellitus (T2DM), and HD mice model develops diabetes. However, the mechanism and pathways that link Huntington's disease and diabetes have not been well established. Understanding the underlying mechanisms can reveal potential targets for drug development in HD. In this study, we investigated the transcriptome of mHTT cell populations alongside intracellular glucose measurements using a functionalized nanopipette. Several genes related to glucose uptake and glucose homeostasis are affected. We observed changes in intracellular glucose concentrations and identified altered transcript levels of certain genes including Sorcs1, Hh-II and Vldlr. Our data suggest that these can be used as markers for HD progression. Sorcs1 may not only have a role in glucose metabolism and trafficking but also in glutamatergic pathways affecting trafficking of synaptic components.

  11. Genetic Deficiency of Complement Component 3 Does Not Alter Disease Progression in a Mouse Model of Huntington's Disease

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    Larkin, Paul B.; Muchowski, Paul J.

    2012-01-01

    Several genes and proteins of the complement cascade are present at elevated levels in brains of patients with Huntington's disease (HD). The complement cascade is well characterized as an effector arm of the immune system, and in the brain it is important for developmental synapse elimination. We hypothesized that increased levels of complement in HD brains contributes to disease progression, perhaps by contributing to synapse elimination or inflammatory signaling. We tested this hypothesis in the R6/2 mouse model of HD by crossing mice deficient in complement component 3 (C3), a crucial complement protein found at increased levels in HD brains, to R6/2 mice and monitoring behavioral and neuropathological disease progression. We found no alterations in multiple behavioral assays, weight or survival in R6/2 mice lacking C3. We also quantified the expression of several complement cascade genes in R6/2 brains and found that the large scale upregulation of complement genes observed in HD brains is not mirrored in R6/2 brains. These data show that C3 deficiency does not alter disease progression in the R6/2 mouse model of HD. PMID:23097680

  12. Genetic modifiers of Mendelian disease: Huntington's disease and the trinucleotide repeat disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holmans, Peter A; Massey, Thomas H; Jones, Lesley

    2017-10-01

    In the decades since the genes and mutations associated with the commoner Mendelian disorders were first discovered, technological advances in genetic analysis have made finding genomic variation a much less onerous task. Recently, the global efforts to collect subjects with Mendelian disorders, to better define the disorders and to empower appropriate clinical trials, along with improved genetic technologies, have allowed the identification of genetic variation that does not cause disease, but substantially modifies disease presentation. The advantage of this is it identifies biological pathways and molecules, that, if modified in people, might alter disease presentation. In Huntington's disease (HD), caused by an expanded CAG repeat tract in HTT, genetic variation has been uncovered that is associated with change in the onset or progression of disease. Some of this variation lies in genes that are part of the DNA damage response, previously suggested to be important in modulating expansion of the repeat tract in germline and somatic cells. The genetic evidence implicates a DNA damage response-related pathway in modulating the pathogenicity of the repeat tracts in HD, and possibly, in other trinucleotide repeat disorders. These findings offer new targets for drug development in these currently intractable disorders. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  13. [Huntington's Disease in Balearic Islands Population-Based Registry of Rare Diseases: Prevalence and Mortality during the Period 2010-2013. Spain].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cáffaro Rovira, Mercedes; Salom Castell, M Magdalena

    2017-02-16

    Huntington's disease is a hereditary disease with low prevalence. The low frequency of Huntington's disease leads to its inclusion as one of the pathologies in the Registry of Rare Diseases. The Balearic Islands Population-based Registry of Rare Diseases began in 2010. Previously, there had been no prevalence or mortality data for Huntington's disease in the Balearic Islands. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence and mortality of Huntington's disease in the Balearic Islands between 2010 and 2013. The data sources were the Balearic Islands Population-based Registry of Rare Diseases, from which the diagnosed cases were obtained; the Balearic Islands Mortality Register, from which the deceased cases were obtained; the Balearic Islands Health Service, from which the number of Health Cards was obtained; and the National Institute for Statistics, from which population data were obtained. Prevalence and mortality rates were calculated. The Balearic Islands Population-based Registry of Rare Diseases registered 27 cases of Huntington's disease between 2010-2013. 63% of these were women. The period prevalence rate was 2.6 per 100,000 and the period mortality rate was 1.1 per 100,000. Menorca was the island with the highest rates, the prevalence rate was 5,9 per 100,000 and the mortality rate was 2,1 per 100,000. Prevalence and mortality of Huntington's disease in the Balearic Islands are low compared to similar areas.

  14. Development of the Music Therapy Assessment Tool for Advanced Huntington's Disease: A Pilot Validation Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Kelly, Julian; Bodak, Rebeka

    2016-01-01

    Case studies of people with Huntington's disease (HD) report that music therapy provides a range of benefits that may improve quality of life; however, no robust music therapy assessment tools exist for this population. Develop and conduct preliminary psychometric testing of a music therapy assessment tool for patients with advanced HD. First, we established content and face validity of the Music Therapy Assessment Tool for Advanced HD (MATA-HD) through focus groups and field testing. Second, we examined psychometric properties of the resulting MATA-HD in terms of its construct validity, internal consistency, and inter-rater and intra-rater reliability over 10 group music therapy sessions with 19 patients. The resulting MATA-HD included a total of 15 items across six subscales (Arousal/Attention, Physical Presentation, Communication, Musical, Cognition, and Psychological/Behavioral). We found good construct validity (r ≥ 0.7) for Mood, Communication Level, Communication Effectiveness, Choice, Social Behavior, Arousal, and Attention items. Cronbach's α of 0.825 indicated good internal consistency across 11 items with a common focus of engagement in therapy. The inter-rater reliability (IRR) Intra-Class Coefficient (ICC) scores averaged 0.65, and a mean intra-rater ICC reliability of 0.68 was obtained. Further training and retesting provided a mean of IRR ICC of 0.7. Preliminary data indicate that the MATA-HD is a promising tool for measuring patient responses to music therapy interventions across psychological, physical, social, and communication domains of functioning in patients with advanced HD. © the American Music Therapy Association 2016. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  15. New measures to capture end of life concerns in Huntington disease: Meaning and Purpose and Concern with Death and Dying from HDQLIFE (a patient-reported outcomes measurement system).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlozzi, N E; Downing, N R; McCormack, M K; Schilling, S G; Perlmutter, J S; Hahn, E A; Lai, J S; Frank, S; Quaid, K A; Paulsen, J S; Cella, D; Goodnight, S M; Miner, J A; Nance, M A

    2016-10-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is an incurable terminal disease. Thus, end of life (EOL) concerns are common in these individuals. A quantitative measure of EOL concerns in HD would enable a better understanding of how these concerns impact health-related quality of life. Therefore, we developed new measures of EOL for use in HD. An EOL item pool of 45 items was field tested in 507 individuals with prodromal or manifest HD. Exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses (EFA and CFA, respectively) were conducted to establish unidimensional item pools. Item response theory (IRT) and differential item functioning analyses were applied to the identified unidimensional item pools to select the final items. EFA and CFA supported two separate unidimensional sets of items: Concern with Death and Dying (16 items), and Meaning and Purpose (14 items). IRT and DIF supported the retention of 12 Concern with Death and Dying items and 4 Meaning and Purpose items. IRT data supported the development of both a computer adaptive test (CAT) and a 6-item, static short form for Concern with Death and Dying. The HDQLIFE Concern with Death and Dying CAT and corresponding 6-item short form, and the 4-item calibrated HDQLIFE Meaning and Purpose scale demonstrate excellent psychometric properties. These new measures have the potential to provide clinically meaningful information about end-of-life preferences and concerns to clinicians and researchers working with individuals with HD. In addition, these measures may also be relevant and useful for other terminal conditions.

  16. Monomeric, Oligomeric and Polymeric Proteins in Huntington Disease and Other Diseases of Polyglutamine Expansion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guylaine Hoffner

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Huntington disease and other diseases of polyglutamine expansion are each caused by a different protein bearing an excessively long polyglutamine sequence and are associated with neuronal death. Although these diseases affect largely different brain regions, they all share a number of characteristics, and, therefore, are likely to possess a common mechanism. In all of the diseases, the causative protein is proteolyzed, becomes abnormally folded and accumulates in oligomers and larger aggregates. The aggregated and possibly the monomeric expanded polyglutamine are likely to play a critical role in the pathogenesis and there is increasing evidence that the secondary structure of the protein influences its toxicity. We describe here, with special attention to huntingtin, the mechanisms of polyglutamine aggregation and the modulation of aggregation by the sequences flanking the polyglutamine. We give a comprehensive picture of the characteristics of monomeric and aggregated polyglutamine, including morphology, composition, seeding ability, secondary structure, and toxicity. The structural heterogeneity of aggregated polyglutamine may explain why polyglutamine-containing aggregates could paradoxically be either toxic or neuroprotective.

  17. Calpastatin ablation aggravates the molecular phenotype in cell and animal models of Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weber, Jonasz Jeremiasz; Kloock, Simon Johannes; Nagel, Maike; Ortiz-Rios, Midea Malena; Hofmann, Julian; Riess, Olaf; Nguyen, Huu Phuc

    2018-02-02

    Deciphering the molecular pathology of Huntington disease is of particular importance, not only for a better understanding of this neurodegenerative disease, but also to identify potential therapeutic targets. The polyglutamine-expanded disease protein huntingtin was shown to undergo proteolysis, which results in the accumulation of toxic and aggregation-prone fragments. Amongst several classes of proteolytic enzymes responsible for huntingtin processing, the group of calcium-activated calpains has been found to be a significant mediator of the disease protein toxicity. To confirm the impact of calpain-mediated huntingtin cleavage in Huntington disease, we analysed the effect of depleting or overexpressing the endogenous calpain inhibitor calpastatin in HEK293T cells transfected with wild-type or polyglutamine-expanded huntingtin. Moreover, we crossbred huntingtin knock-in mice with calpastatin knockout animals to assess its effect not only on huntingtin cleavage and aggregation but also additional molecular markers. We demonstrated that a reduced or ablated expression of calpastatin triggers calpain overactivation and a consequently increased mutant huntingtin cleavage in cells and in vivo. These alterations were accompanied by an elevated formation of predominantly cytoplasmic huntingtin aggregates. On the other hand, overexpression of calpastatin in cells attenuated huntingtin fragmentation and aggregation. In addition, we observed an enhanced cleavage of DARPP-32, p35 and synapsin-1 in neuronal tissue upon calpain overactivation. Our results corroborate the important role of calpains in the molecular pathogenesis of Huntington disease and endorse targeting these proteolytic enzymes as a therapeutic approach. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Peripheral biomarkers of oxidative stress and their limited potential in evaluation of clinical features of Huntington's patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ciancarelli, Irene; De Amicis, Daniela; Di Massimo, Caterina; Di Scanno, Carla; Pistarini, Caterina; D'Orazio, Nicolantonio; Tozzi Ciancarelli, Maria Giuliana

    2014-09-01

    Peripheral oxidative biomarkers could be useful for monitoring clinical features of Huntington's disease (HD). Cu/Zn-superoxide dismutase (Cu/Zn-SOD), neuron-specific enolase (NSE) and 8-hydroxy-2'-deoxyguanosine (8-oxoGua) serum levels were analysed in 18 HD patients and 10 controls. Clinical measures were recorded from each HD patients. Cu/Zn-SOD, NSE and 8-oxoGua values were higher in HD patients than in controls. Cu/Zn-SOD and NSE correlated positively. No correlation was observed between the biomarkers analysed and the clinical measures assessed. Serum oxidative biomarkers could express the neuronal oxidative processes going on in HD patients but are inadequate to evaluate clinical features of the disease.

  19. The role of mitochondrial disturbances in Alzheimer, Parkinson and Huntington diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carvalho, Cristina; Correia, Sónia C; Cardoso, Susana; Plácido, Ana I; Candeias, Emanuel; Duarte, Ana I; Moreira, Paula I

    2015-01-01

    Mitochondria are highly dynamic organelles involved in a multitude of cellular events. Disturbances of mitochondrial function and dynamics are associated with cells degeneration and death. Neurons, perhaps more than any other cell, depend on mitochondria for their survival. In fact, accumulating evidence reveals that mitochondria take center stage in several neurodegenerative diseases. Here we will give an overview of the mechanisms involved in the maintenance of a healthy mitochondrial pool in neuronal cells and how disturbances in these processes underlie the pathophysiology of three common neurodegenerative disorders, Alzheimer, Parkinson and Huntington diseases. Additionally, we will discuss the role of sirtuins in neurodegeneration and how mitohormesis and vitagenes activation may counteract neurodegenerative events.

  20. Advances in huntington disease drug discovery: novel approaches to model disease phenotypes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bard, Jonathan; Wall, Michael D; Lazari, Ovadia; Arjomand, Jamshid; Munoz-Sanjuan, Ignacio

    2014-02-01

    Huntington disease is a monogenic, autosomal dominant, progressive neurodegenerative disorder caused by a trinucleotide CAG repeat expansion in exon 1 of the huntingtin (HTT) gene; age of onset of clinical symptoms inversely correlates with expanded CAG repeat length. HD leads to extensive degeneration of the basal ganglia, hypothalamic nuclei, and selected cortical areas, and a wide range of molecular mechanisms have been implicated in disease pathology in animal or cellular models expressing mutated HTT (mHTT) proteins, either full-length or amino-terminal fragments. However, HD cellular models that recapitulate the slow progression of the disease have not been available due to the toxicity of overexpressed exogenous mHTT or to limitations with using primary cells for long-term studies. Most investigations of the effects of mHTT relied on cytotoxicity or aggregation end points in heterologous systems or in primary embryonic neuroglial cultures derived from HD mouse models. More innovative approaches are currently under active investigation, including screening using electrophysiological endpoints, as well as the recent use of primary blood mononuclear cells and of human embryonic stem cells derived from a variety of HD research participants. Here we describe how these cellular systems are being used to investigate HD biology as well as to identify mechanisms with therapeutic potential.

  1. Assessing Impairment of Executive Function and Psychomotor Speed in Premanifest and Manifest Huntington's Disease Gene-expansion Carriers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Unmack Larsen, Ida; Vinther-Jensen, Tua; Gade, Anders

    2015-01-01

    Executive functions (EF) and psychomotor speed (PMS) has been widely studied in Huntington's disease (HD). Most studies have focused on finding markers of disease progression by comparing group means at different disease stages. Our aim was to investigate performances on nine measures of EF and PMS...

  2. Quantitative Electroencephalographic Analysis Provides an Early-Stage Indicator of Disease Onset and Progression in the zQ175 Knock-In Mouse Model of Huntington's Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fisher, Simon P.; Schwartz, Michael D.; Wurts-Black, Sarah; Thomas, Alexia M.; Chen, Tsui-Ming; Miller, Michael A.; Palmerston, Jeremiah B.; Kilduff, Thomas S.; Morairty, Stephen R.

    2016-01-01

    Study Objectives: Patients with Huntington's disease (HD) show a high prevalence of sleep disorders that typically occur prior to the onset of motoric symptoms and neurodegeneration. Our understanding of the pathophysiological alterations in premanifest HD is limited, hindering the ability to measure disease modification in response to treatment. We used a full-length knock-in HD model to determine early changes in the electroencephalogram (EEG) and sleep that may predict the onset and progression of the disease. Methods: A 10-month longitudinal study was designed to determine the effect of the HD mutation on the EEG and sleep/wake changes in heterozygous (HET) and homozygous (HOM) zQ175 mice and wild-type (WT) littermates from 8 to 48 w of age. Mice were instrumented with tethered headmounts to record EEG/electromyography signals. Telemeters were implanted to continuously measure locomotor activity (LMA) and body temperature (Tb). Sleep deprivation (SDep) was performed at 8, 12, 16, 24, 32, and 48 w of age. Results: The HD mutation disrupted the EEG field potential from 8–12 w in an age- and mutant huntington dose-dependent manner, prior to changes in sleep/wake states, LMA, and Tb. Prominent effects of the HD mutation on the EEG included a progressive reduction in low frequency power, a slowing of rapid eye movement peak theta frequency, and the emergence of state-dependent beta/gamma oscillations. There was no effect of genotype on the relative increase in nonrapid eye movement delta power or sleep time in response to SDep. Conclusions: The expression of the Huntington's disease (HD) mutation results in complex EEG alterations that occur prior to deficits in behavioral measures and are one of the earliest phenotypes uncovered in this mouse model. Despite these EEG changes, homeostatic responses to sleep loss were preserved in HET and HOM zQ175 mice. Greater insight into the localization and response of these EEG alterations to novel therapies may enable early

  3. Discovery and structure-activity relationship of potent and selective covalent inhibitors of transglutaminase 2 for Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prime, Michael E; Andersen, Ole A; Barker, John J; Brooks, Mark A; Cheng, Robert K Y; Toogood-Johnson, Ian; Courtney, Stephen M; Brookfield, Frederick A; Yarnold, Christopher J; Marston, Richard W; Johnson, Peter D; Johnsen, Siw F; Palfrey, Jordan J; Vaidya, Darshan; Erfan, Sayeh; Ichihara, Osamu; Felicetti, Brunella; Palan, Shilpa; Pedret-Dunn, Anna; Schaertl, Sabine; Sternberger, Ina; Ebneth, Andreas; Scheel, Andreas; Winkler, Dirk; Toledo-Sherman, Leticia; Beconi, Maria; Macdonald, Douglas; Muñoz-Sanjuan, Ignacio; Dominguez, Celia; Wityak, John

    2012-02-09

    Tissue transglutaminase 2 (TG2) is a multifunctional protein primarily known for its calcium-dependent enzymatic protein cross-linking activity via isopeptide bond formation between glutamine and lysine residues. TG2 overexpression and activity have been found to be associated with Huntington's disease (HD); specifically, TG2 is up-regulated in the brains of HD patients and in animal models of the disease. Interestingly, genetic deletion of TG2 in two different HD mouse models, R6/1 and R6/2, results in improved phenotypes including a reduction in neuronal death and prolonged survival. Starting with phenylacrylamide screening hit 7d, we describe the SAR of this series leading to potent and selective TG2 inhibitors. The suitability of the compounds as in vitro tools to elucidate the biology of TG2 was demonstrated through mode of inhibition studies, characterization of druglike properties, and inhibition profiles in a cell lysate assay.

  4. Clinical and biomarker changes in premanifest Huntington disease show trial feasibility: a decade of the PREDICT-HD study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jane S Paulsen

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available There is growing consensus that intervention and treatment of Huntington disease (HD should occur at the earliest stage possible. Various early-intervention methods for this fatal neurodegenerative disease have been identified, but preventive clinical trials for HD are limited by a lack of knowledge of the natural history of the disease and a dearth of appropriate outcome measures. Objectives of the current study are to document the natural history of premanifest HD progression in the largest cohort ever studied and to develop a battery of imaging and clinical markers of premanifest HD progression that can be used as outcome measures in preventive clinical trials. PREDICT-HD is a 32-site, international, observational study of premanifest HD, with annual examination of 1013 participants with premanifest HD and 301 gene-expansion negative controls between 2001 and 2012. Findings document 39 variables representing imaging, motor, cognitive, functional, and psychiatric domains, showing different rates of decline between premanifest Huntington disease and controls. Required sample size and models of premanifest HD are presented to inform future design of clinical and preclinical research. Preventive clinical trials in premanifest HD with participants who have a medium or high probability of motor onset are calculated to be as resource-effective as those conducted in diagnosed HD and could interrupt disease seven to twelve years earlier. Methods and measures for preventive clinical trials in premanifest HD more than a dozen years from motor onset are also feasible. These findings represent the most thorough documentation of a clinical battery for experimental therapeutics in stages of premanifest HD, the time period for which effective intervention may provide the most positive possible outcome for patients and their families affected by this devastating disease.

  5. An Item Response Analysis of the Motor and Behavioral Subscales of the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale in Huntington Disease Gene Expansion Carriers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaccarino, Anthony L.; Anderson, Karen; Borowsky, Beth; Duff, Kevin; Giuliano, Joseph; Guttman, Mark; Ho, Aileen K.; Orth, Michael; Paulsen, Jane S.; Sills, Terrence; van Kammen, Daniel P.; Evans, Kenneth R.

    2011-01-01

    Although the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS) is widely used in the assessment of Huntington disease (HD), the ability of individual items to discriminate individual differences in motor or behavioral manifestations has not been extensively studied in HD gene expansion carriers without a motor-defined clinical diagnosis (i.e., prodromal-HD or prHD). To elucidate the relationship between scores on individual motor and behavioral UHDRS items and total score for each subscale, a non-parametric item response analysis was performed on retrospective data from two multicentre, longitudinal studies. Motor and Behavioral assessments were supplied for 737 prHD individuals with data from 2114 visits (PREDICT-HD) and 686 HD individuals with data from 1482 visits (REGISTRY). Option characteristic curves were generated for UHDRS subscale items in relation to their subscale score. In prHD, overall severity of motor signs was low and participants had scores of 2 or above on very few items. In HD, motor items that assessed ocular pursuit, saccade initiation, finger tapping, tandem walking, and to a lesser extent saccade velocity, dysarthia, tongue protrusion, pronation/supination, Luria, bradykinesia, choreas, gait and balance on the retropulsion test were found to discriminate individual differences across a broad range of motor severity. In prHD, depressed mood, anxiety, and irritable behavior demonstrated good discriminative properties. In HD, depressed mood demonstrated a good relationship with the overall behavioral score. These data suggest that at least some UHDRS items appear to have utility across a broad range of severity, although many items demonstrate problematic features. PMID:21370269

  6. A single dose of hypnotic corrects sleep and EEG abnormalities in symptomatic Huntington's disease mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kantor, Sandor; Varga, Janos; Morton, A Jennifer

    2016-06-01

    Sleep and electroencephalogram abnormalities are prominent early features of Huntington's disease (HD) that typically appear before the onset of characteristic motor symptoms. The changes in sleep and electroencephalogram seen in HD patients are largely recapitulated in mouse models of HD such as transgenic R6/2 lines. To test whether or not drugs with hypnotic properties can correct the sleep and electroencephalogram abnormalities seen in HD mice, we treated male wild-type (WT; N = 7) and R6/2 mice (N = 9) acutely with intraperitoneal injections of vehicle, zolpidem (5, 10 or 20 mg/kg) or amitriptyline (5, 10 or 20 mg/kg), and then monitored their sleep-wake behavior. In R6/2 mice, both zolpidem and amitriptyline suppressed the abnormally high REM sleep amount and electroencephalographic gamma (30-46 Hz) oscillations in a dose-dependent manner. Amitriptyline's effect on sleep was similar in both genotypes, whereas zolpidem showed significant genotype differences. Zolpidem exerted a strong hypnotic effect in WT mice by increasing electroencephalographic delta power, doubling the mean bout duration and the total amount of non-rapid eye movement sleep. However, no such effect was seen in R6/2 mice. Our study demonstrates that the pathophysiological changes seen in sleep and electroencephalogram are not 'hard-wired' in HD brain and can be reversed even at late stages of the disease. The diminished hypnotic effect of zolpidem suggests that the GABAergic control of sleep-wake states is impaired in HD mice. A better understanding of the neurochemical basis underlying these abnormalities should lead to more effective and rational therapies for HD. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Mutant huntingtin protein expression and blood-spinal cord barrier dysfunction in huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sciacca, Giacomo; Cicchetti, Francesca

    2017-12-01

    The aim of the study was to assess the distribution, frequency, and specific location of mutant huntingtin protein (mHTT) aggregates-the pathological hallmark of Huntington disease (HD)-within the various compartments of the spinal cord and their potential impact on the local vasculature and blood-spinal cord barrier (BSCB). We performed a series of postmortem immunohistochemical and immunofluorescent stainings, as well as Western blot analyses, on cervical and lumbar sections of the spinal cord in patients diagnosed with HD (n = 11 of all grades of disease severity) along with sex- and age-matched healthy controls (n = 9). We observed that mHTT was preferably expressed within the anterior horn of the gray matter, in both cervical and lumbar sections. At the cellular level, mHTT aggregates were more often encountered in the extracellular matrix but could also be observed within cell bodies and neurites as well as within the endothelium of blood vessels with an increase in the density of small blood vessels in cervical sections of HD cases. These vasculature changes were accompanied with features of BSCB leakage, as assessed by the presence of increased levels of fibrinogen in the surrounding parenchyma and enhanced leukocyte infiltration. This alteration in BSCB integrity may be explained, in part, by the dysregulation we found in some of the main proteins associated with it such as junctional adhesion molecule-1 and vascular endothelial cadherin. These observations have important implications for our understanding of HD pathology and may also have significant therapeutic implications. Ann Neurol 2017;82:981-994. © 2017 American Neurological Association.

  8. Genetic and pharmacological inhibition of calcineurin corrects the BDNF transport defect in Huntington's disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pineda Jose R

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Huntington's disease (HD is an inherited neurogenerative disease caused by an abnormal expansion of glutamine repeats in the huntingtin protein. There is currently no treatment to prevent the neurodegeneration caused by this devastating disorder. Huntingtin has been shown to be a positive regulator of vesicular transport, particularly for neurotrophins such as brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF. This function is lost in patients with HD, resulting in a decrease in neurotrophic support and subsequent neuronal death. One promising line of treatment is therefore the restoration of huntingtin function in BDNF transport. Results The phosphorylation of huntingtin at serine 421 (S421 restores its function in axonal transport. We therefore investigated whether inhibition of calcineurin, the bona fide huntingtin S421 phosphatase, restored the transport defects observed in HD. We found that pharmacological inhibition of calcineurin by FK506 led to sustained phosphorylation of mutant huntingtin at S421. FK506 restored BDNF transport in two complementary models: rat primary neuronal cultures expressing mutant huntingtin and mouse cortical neurons from HdhQ111/Q111 HD knock-in mice. This effect was the result of specific calcineurin inhibition, as calcineurin silencing restored both anterograde and retrograde transport in neurons from HdhQ111/Q111 mice. We also observed a specific increase in calcineurin activity in the brain of HdhQ111/Q111 mice potentially accounting for the selective loss of huntingtin phosphorylation and contributing to neuronal cell death in HD. Conclusion Our results validate calcineurin as a target for the treatment of HD and provide the first demonstration of the restoration of huntingtin function by an FDA-approved compound.

  9. Theory of Mind Is Impaired in Mild to Moderate Huntington's Disease Independently from Global Cognitive Functioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lagravinese, Giovanna; Avanzino, Laura; Raffo De Ferrari, Alessia; Marchese, Roberta; Serrati, Carlo; Mandich, Paola; Abbruzzese, Giovanni; Pelosin, Elisa

    2017-01-01

    Affective "Theory of Mind" (ToM) is the specific ability to represent own and others' emotional states and feelings. Previous studies examined affective ToM ability in patients with Huntington's disease (HD), using the "Reading the Mind in the Eyes test" (RMET). Results were consistent in showing difficulties in inferring complex mental states from photographs of people even in the early stage of HD. However, there has been no agreement as to whether or not cognitive impairments in HD population might have contributed to poor performance on the RMET test. The aim of the present study was to assess whether the affective ToM ability was impaired in the mild to moderate stages of HD, and whether there was an association between compromised ToM ability and the presence of cognitive impairment. We evaluated ToM by means of RMET and global cognitive functioning by means of the MoCA questionnaire in 15 HD patients and 15 healthy subjects (HS). Both groups were matched for age and level of education. Our study showed that the ability to judge a person's mental states from a picture of their eyes was impaired in HD patients compared to normal population. Indeed, HD subjects gave the 34% of correct responses on RMET, whereas healthy control subjects' percentage of correct responses was 71%. Furthermore, this impairment was not correlated with global cognitive functioning except for the visuospatial task. These results show that RMET might represent a valid instrument to assess affective ToM ability in HD patients in the mild to moderate stages of the disease, independently from their cognitive status. Since it is known that HD patients, in addition to motor symptoms, suffer from cognitive deficits, including memory and executive impairments, it is important to have an instrument, which is not influenced by cognitive abilities. It is possible therefore to use RMET to assess important aspects of HD patients such as their ability to recognize others' emotions and feelings even

  10. Circadian rhythms of melatonin and cortisol in manifest Huntington's disease and in acute cortical ischemic stroke.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adamczak-Ratajczak, A; Kupsz, J; Owecki, M; Zielonka, D; Sowinska, A; Checinska-Maciejewska, Z; Krauss, H; Michalak, S; Gibas-Dorna, M

    2017-08-01

    Recent studies indicate disruptions to the circadian system in brain injury and neurodegeneration. The results, however, are often not consistent and limited by measurement of only one circadian marker and by infrequent sampling rates. In this study, we examined diurnal rhythmicity in different stages of Huntington (HD) disease and in patients with acute moderate ischemic stroke (AIS) outside the retinohypothalamic pathway by evaluating serum concentrations of melatonin and cortisol at twelve timepoints. All study participants were subjected to the same study protocol of 12-hour light/dark cycle and controlled room conditions. Using cosinor analysis of data and comparing the results with the controls we found melatonin phase delay with lowered amplitude and mesor in stage III HD patients. These changes coexisted with phase advanced rhythm and elevated values of mesor and amplitude for cortisol. Early and mid-stages of HD showed only a phase advance in cortisol secretion. In AIS the circadian rhythm of serum melatonin was sustained without any phase shift and exhibited more flattened profile (lowered mesor and amplitude values), while advanced rhythm with higher mesor for cortisol was present. In conclusion, 1) abnormal pattern of melatonin release in the late stages of HD and in moderate AIS occurs in conjunction with phase-advanced rhythm of cortisol; 2) changes observed in late stages of HD are similar to those that occur with ageing; 3) brain regions other than the presumptive retinopineal neural pathway may play an important role in the pineal production of melatonin in humans; 4) lesion in extrahypothalamic region is related to the strong adrenal stimulation in response to AIS.

  11. Sexually dimorphic serotonergic dysfunction in a mouse model of Huntington's disease and depression.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thibault Renoir

    Full Text Available Depression is the most common psychiatric disorder in Huntington's disease (HD patients. In the general population, women are more prone to develop depression and such susceptibility might be related to serotonergic dysregulation. There is yet to be a study of sexual dimorphism in the development and presentation of depression in HD patients. We investigated whether 8-week-old male and female R6/1 transgenic HD mice display depressive-like endophenotypes associated with serotonergic impairments. We also studied the behavioral effects of acute treatment with sertraline. We found that only female HD mice exhibited a decreased preference for saccharin as well as impaired emotionality-related behaviors when assessed on the novelty-suppressed feeding test (NSFT and the forced-swimming test (FST. The exaggerated immobility time displayed by female HD in the FST was reduced by acute administration of sertraline. We also report an increased response to the 5-HT(1A receptor agonist 8-OH-DPAT in inducing hypothermia and a decreased 5-HT(2A receptor function in HD animals. While tissue levels of serotonin were reduced in both male and female HD mice, we found that serotonin concentration and hydroxylase-2 (TPH2 mRNA levels were higher in the hippocampus of males compared to female animals. Finally, the antidepressant-like effects of sertraline in the FST were blunted in male HD animals. This study reveals sex-specific depressive-related behaviors during an early stage of HD prior to any cognitive and motor deficits. Our data suggest a crucial role for disrupted serotonin signaling in mediating the sexually dimorphic depression-like phenotype in HD mice.

  12. The CREST-E study of creatine for Huntington disease: A randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hersch, Steven M; Schifitto, Giovanni; Oakes, David; Bredlau, Amy-Lee; Meyers, Catherine M; Nahin, Richard; Rosas, Herminia Diana

    2017-08-08

    To investigate whether creatine administration could slow progressive functional decline in adults with early symptoms of Huntington disease. We conducted a multicenter, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study of up to 40 g daily of creatine monohydrate in participants with stage I and II HD treated for up to 48 months. The primary outcome measure was the rate of change in total functional capacity (TFC) between baseline and end of follow-up. Secondary outcome measures included changes in additional clinical scores, tolerability, and quality of life. Safety was assessed by adverse events and laboratory studies. At 46 sites in North America, Australia, and New Zealand, 553 participants were randomized to creatine (275) or placebo (278). The trial was designed to enroll 650 patients, but was halted for futility after the first interim analysis. The estimated rates of decline in the primary outcome measure (TFC) were 0.82 points per year for participants on creatine, 0.70 points per year for participants on placebo, favoring placebo (nominal 95% confidence limits -0.11 to 0.35). Adverse events, mainly gastrointestinal, were significantly more common in participants on creatine. Serious adverse events, including deaths, were more frequent in the placebo group. Subgroup analysis suggested that men and women may respond differently to creatine treatment. Our data do not support the use of creatine treatment for delaying functional decline in early manifest HD. NCT00712426. This study provides Class II evidence that for patients with early symptomatic HD, creatine monohydrate is not beneficial for slowing functional decline. Copyright © 2017 The Author(s). Published by Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. on behalf of the American Academy of Neurology.

  13. Endocannabinoids and Neurodegenerative Disorders: Parkinson's Disease, Huntington's Chorea, Alzheimer's Disease, and Others.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández-Ruiz, Javier; Romero, Julián; Ramos, José A

    2015-01-01

    This review focuses on the role of the endocannabinoid signaling system in controlling neuronal survival, an extremely important issue to be considered when developing new therapies for neurodegenerative disorders. First, we will describe the cellular and molecular mechanisms, and the signaling pathways, underlying these neuroprotective properties, including the control of glutamate homeostasis, calcium influx, the toxicity of reactive oxygen species, glial activation and other inflammatory events; and the induction of autophagy. We will then concentrate on the preclinical studies and the few clinical trials that have been carried out targeting endocannabinoid signaling in three important chronic progressive neurodegenerative disorders (Parkinson's disease, Huntington's chorea, and Alzheimer's disease), as well as in other less well-studied disorders. We will end by offering some ideas and proposals for future research that should be carried out to optimize endocannabinoid-based treatments for these disorders. Such studies will strengthen the possibility that these therapies will be investigated in the clinical scenario and licensed for their use in specific disorders.

  14. Ethical aspects of a predictive test for Huntington's Disease: A long term perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andersson, Petra Lilja; Petersén, Åsa; Graff, Caroline; Edberg, Anna-Karin

    2016-08-01

    A predictive genetic test for Huntington's disease can be used before any symptoms are apparent, but there is only sparse knowledge about the long-term consequences of a positive test result. Such knowledge is important in order to gain a deeper understanding of families' experiences. The aim of the study was to describe a young couple's long-term experiences and the consequences of a predictive test for Huntington's disease. A descriptive case study design was used with a longitudinal narrative life history approach. The study was based on 18 interviews with a young couple, covering a period of 2.5 years; starting 6 months after the disclosure of the test results showing the woman to be a carrier of the gene causing Huntington's disease. Even though the study was extremely sensitive, where potential harm constantly had to be balanced against the benefits, the couple had a strong wish to contribute to increased knowledge about people in their situation. The study was approved by the ethics committee. The results show that the long-term consequences were devastating for the family. This 3-year period was characterized by anxiety, repeated suicide attempts, financial difficulties and eventually divorce. By offering a predictive test, the healthcare system has an ethical and moral responsibility. Once the test result is disclosed, the individual and the family cannot live without the knowledge it brings. Support is needed in a long-term perspective and should involve counselling concerning the families' everyday life involving important decision-making, reorientation towards a new outlook of the future and the meaning of life. As health professionals, our ethical and moral responsibility thus embraces not only the phase in direct connection to the actual genetic test but also a commitment to provide support to help the family deal with the long-term consequences of the test. © The Author(s) 2015.

  15. Suppression of Somatic Expansion Delays the Onset of Pathophysiology in a Mouse Model of Huntington's Disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Helen Budworth

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Huntington's Disease (HD is caused by inheritance of a single disease-length allele harboring an expanded CAG repeat, which continues to expand in somatic tissues with age. The inherited disease allele expresses a toxic protein, and whether further somatic expansion adds to toxicity is unknown. We have created an HD mouse model that resolves the effects of the inherited and somatic expansions. We show here that suppressing somatic expansion substantially delays the onset of disease in littermates that inherit the same disease-length allele. Furthermore, a pharmacological inhibitor, XJB-5-131, inhibits the lengthening of the repeat tracks, and correlates with rescue of motor decline in these animals. The results provide evidence that pharmacological approaches to offset disease progression are possible.

  16. Corticosterone dysregulation exacerbates disease progression in the R6/2 transgenic mouse model of Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dufour, Brett D; McBride, Jodi L

    2016-09-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a genetic neurological disorder that causes severe and progressive motor, cognitive, psychiatric, and metabolic symptoms. There is a robust, significant elevation in circulating levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, in HD patients; however, the causes and consequences of this elevation are largely uncharacterized. Here, we evaluated whether elevated levels of corticosterone, the rodent homolog of cortisol, contributed to the development of symptomology in transgenic HD mice. Wild-type (WT) and transgenic R6/2 mice were given either 1) adrenalectomy with WT-level corticosterone replacement (10ng/ml), 2) adrenalectomy with high HD-level corticosterone replacement (60ng/ml), or 3) sham surgery without replacement. R6/2 mice on HD-level replacement showed severe and rapid weight loss (ptransgenic HD mice display a spontaneous elevation in circulating corticosterone levels that became significant at 10weeks of age. Furthermore, we identified significant dysregulation of circadian rhythmicity of corticosterone release measured over a 24h period compared to wild-type controls. Unexpectedly, we found that R6/2 transgenic mice show a blunted corticosterone response to restraint stress, compared to wild-type mice. Together, these data provide further evidence that HPA-axis activity is abnormal in R6/2 mice, and highlight the important role that cortisol plays in HD symptom development. Our findings suggest that cortisol-reducing therapeutics may be of value in improving HD patient quality of life. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Derivation of Huntington Disease affected Genea046 human embryonic stem cell line

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Biljana Dumevska

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The Genea046 human embryonic stem cell line was derived from a donated, fully commercially consented ART blastocyst, carrying HTT gene CAG expansion of 45 repeats, indicative of Huntington Disease. Following ICM outgrowth on inactivated human feeders, karyotype was confirmed as 46, XX by CGH and STR analysis demonstrated a female Allele pattern. The hESC line had pluripotent cell morphology, 85% of cells expressed Nanog, 92% Oct4, 75% Tra1–60 and 99% SSEA4 and demonstrated Alkaline Phosphatase activity. The cell line was negative for Mycoplasma and visible contamination.

  18. The impact of oculomotor functioning on neuropsychological performance in Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carvalho, Janessa O; Long, Jeffrey D; Westervelt, Holly J; Smith, Megan M; Bruce, Jared M; Kim, Ji-In; Mills, James A; Paulsen, Jane S

    2016-01-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is a neurodegenerative condition with prominent motor (including oculomotor), cognitive, and psychiatric effects. While neuropsychological deficits are present in HD, motor impairments may impact performance on neuropsychological measures, especially those requiring a speeded response, as has been demonstrated in multiple sclerosis and schizophrenia. The current study is the first to explore associations between oculomotor functions and neuropsychological performance in HD. Participants with impaired oculomotor functioning performed worse than those with normal oculomotor functioning on cognitive tasks requiring oculomotor involvement, particularly on psychomotor speed tasks, controlling for covariates. Consideration of oculomotor dysfunction on neuropsychological performance is critical, particularly for populations with motor deficits.

  19. Inflammatory markers in Huntington's disease plasma—A robust nanoLC–MRM-MS assay development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melinda Rezeli

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The development of an MRM assay for the measurements of six inflammatory markers is presented. We report a robust and sensitive quantitative assay with a relative standard deviation of <15% that accounts for the entire sample processing. The assay has a dynamic range with 4 orders of magnitude and the LOQs are in the attomolar range. We used plasma from Huntington's disease gene carriers and healthy controls to compare our MRM method with antibody based methods. Importantly, we found a good agreement between assays for the measurement of C-reactive protein, in contrast to complement component 3 and complement factor H.

  20. A Classification System to Guide Physical Therapy Management in Huntington Disease: A Case Series.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fritz, Nora E; Busse, Monica; Jones, Karen; Khalil, Hanan; Quinn, Lori

    2017-07-01

    Individuals with Huntington disease (HD), a rare neurological disease, experience impairments in mobility and cognition throughout their disease course. The Medical Research Council framework provides a schema that can be applied to the development and evaluation of complex interventions, such as those provided by physical therapists. Treatment-based classifications, based on expert consensus and available literature, are helpful in guiding physical therapy management across the stages of HD. Such classifications also contribute to the development and further evaluation of well-defined complex interventions in this highly variable and complex neurodegenerative disease. The purpose of this case series was to illustrate the use of these classifications in the management of 2 individuals with late-stage HD. Two females, 40 and 55 years of age, with late-stage HD participated in this case series. Both experienced progressive declines in ambulatory function and balance as well as falls or fear of falling. Both individuals received daily care in the home for activities of daily living. Physical therapy Treatment-Based Classifications for HD guided the interventions and outcomes. Eight weeks of in-home balance training, strength training, task-specific practice of functional activities including transfers and walking tasks, and family/carer education were provided. Both individuals demonstrated improvements that met or exceeded the established minimal detectible change values for gait speed and Timed Up and Go performance. Both also demonstrated improvements on Berg Balance Scale and Physical Performance Test performance, with 1 of the 2 individuals exceeding the established minimal detectible changes for both tests. Reductions in fall risk were evident in both cases. These cases provide proof-of-principle to support use of treatment-based classifications for physical therapy management in individuals with HD. Traditional classification of early-, mid-, and late

  1. Identify Huntington's disease associated genes based on restricted Boltzmann machine with RNA-seq data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Xue; Zhang, Han; Duan, Feng; Quan, Xiongwen

    2017-10-11

    Predicting disease-associated genes is helpful for understanding the molecular mechanisms during the disease progression. Since the pathological mechanisms of neurodegenerative diseases are very complex, traditional statistic-based methods are not suitable for identifying key genes related to the disease development. Recent studies have shown that the computational models with deep structure can learn automatically the features of biological data, which is useful for exploring the characteristics of gene expression during the disease progression. In this paper, we propose a deep learning approach based on the restricted Boltzmann machine to analyze the RNA-seq data of Huntington's disease, namely stacked restricted Boltzmann machine (SRBM). According to the SRBM, we also design a novel framework to screen the key genes during the Huntington's disease development. In this work, we assume that the effects of regulatory factors can be captured by the hierarchical structure and narrow hidden layers of the SRBM. First, we select disease-associated factors with different time period datasets according to the differentially activated neurons in hidden layers. Then, we select disease-associated genes according to the changes of the gene energy in SRBM at different time periods. The experimental results demonstrate that SRBM can detect the important information for differential analysis of time series gene expression datasets. The identification accuracy of the disease-associated genes is improved to some extent using the novel framework. Moreover, the prediction precision of disease-associated genes for top ranking genes using SRBM is effectively improved compared with that of the state of the art methods.

  2. A novel humanized mouse model of Huntington disease for preclinical development of therapeutics targeting mutant huntingtin alleles

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Southwell, Amber L; Skotte, Niels H; Villanueva, Erika B

    2017-01-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is a neurodegenerative disease caused by a mutation in the huntingtin (HTT) gene. HTT is a large protein, interacts with many partners and is involved in many cellular pathways, which are perturbed in HD. Therapies targeting HTT directly are likely to provide the most global...

  3. Relationship of Mediterranean diet and caloric intake to phenoconversion in Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marder, Karen; Gu, Yian; Eberly, Shirley; Tanner, Caroline M; Scarmeas, Nikolaos; Oakes, David; Shoulson, Ira

    2013-11-01

    Adherence to Mediterranean-type diet (MeDi) may delay onset of Alzheimer and Parkinson diseases. Whether adherence to MeDi affects time to phenoconversion in Huntington disease (HD), a highly penetrant, single-gene disorder, is unknown. To determine if MeDi modifies the time to clinical onset of HD (phenoconversion) in premanifest carriers participating in Prospective Huntington at Risk Observational Study (PHAROS), and to examine the effects of body mass index and caloric intake on time to phenoconversion. A prospective cohort study of 41 Huntington study group sites in the United States and Canada involving 1001 participants enrolled in PHAROS between July 1999 and January 2004 who were followed up every 9 months until 2010. A total of 211 participants aged 26 to 57 years had an expanded CAG repeat length (≥ 37). A semiquantitative food frequency questionnaire was administered 33 months after baseline. We calculated daily gram intake for dairy, meat, fruit, vegetables, legumes, cereals, fish, monounsaturated and saturated fatty acids, and alcohol and constructed MeDi scores (0-9); higher scores indicate higher adherence. Demographics, medical history, body mass index, and Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS) score were collected. Cox proportional hazards regression models to determine the association of MeDi and phenoconversion. RESULTS Age, sex, caloric intake, education status, and UHDRS motor scores did not differ among MeDi tertiles (0-3, 4-5, and 6-9). The highest body mass index was associated with the lowest adherence to MeDi. Thirty-one participants phenoconverted. In a model adjusted for age, CAG repeat length, and caloric intake, MeDi was not associated with phenoconversion (P for trend = 0.14 for tertile of MeDi, and P = .22 for continuous MeDi). When individual components of MeDi were analyzed, higher dairy consumption (hazard ratio, 2.36; 95% CI, 1.0-5.57; P = .05) and higher caloric intake (P = .04) were associated with risk of

  4. WHODAS 2.0 in prodromal Huntington disease: measures of functioning in neuropsychiatric disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Downing, Nancy R; Kim, Ji-In; Williams, Janet K; Long, Jeffrey D; Mills, James A; Paulsen, Jane S

    2014-08-01

    Clinical trials to improve day-to-day function in Huntington disease (HD) require accurate outcome measures. The DSM-5 recommends the World Health Organization Disability Assessment Schedule (WHODAS) 2.0 for use in neuropsychiatric disorders. The DSM-5 also states proxy measures may be useful when cognitive function may be impaired. We tested WHODAS participant and companion ratings for differences in baseline and longitudinal function in three prodromal HD groups and a control group. Participants with prodromal HD were stratified by disease progression (low, medium, and high disease burden) based on their cytosine-adenine-guanine (CAG)-age product (CAP) score. Participant (N=726) and companion (N=630) WHODAS scores were examined for group differences, and for participant versus companion differences using linear mixed effects regression and Akaike's information criterion to test model fit. We also compared WHODAS with the Total Functional Capacity (TFC) scale. At baseline, functioning on the WHODAS was rated worse by participants in the high group and companions compared with controls. For longitudinal changes, companions reported functional decline over time in the medium and high groups. In simultaneous analysis, participant and companion longitudinal trajectories showed divergence in the high group, suggesting reduced validity of self-report. The WHODAS showed greater longitudinal difference than the TFC in the medium group relative to controls, whereas the TFC showed greater longitudinal difference than WHODAS in the high group. Results suggest the WHODAS can identify baseline and longitudinal differences in prodromal HD and may be useful in HD clinical trials. Companions may provide more accurate data as the disease progresses.

  5. Elevated NADPH oxidase activity contributes to oxidative stress and cell death in Huntington's disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valencia, Antonio; Sapp, Ellen; Kimm, Jeffrey S.; McClory, Hollis; Reeves, Patrick B.; Alexander, Jonathan; Ansong, Kwadwo A.; Masso, Nicholas; Frosch, Matthew P.; Kegel, Kimberly B.; Li, Xueyi; DiFiglia, Marian

    2013-01-01

    A mutation in the huntingtin (Htt) gene produces mutant Htt and Huntington's disease (HD), a neurodegenerative disorder. HD patients have oxidative damage in the brain, but the causes are unclear. Compared with controls, we found brain levels of NADPH oxidase (NOX) activity, which produces reactive oxygen species (ROS), elevated in human HD postmortem cortex and striatum and highest in striatum of presymptomatic individuals. Synaptosome fractions from cortex and striatum of HD140Q/140Q mice had elevated NOX activity at 3 months of age and a further rise at 6 and 12 months compared with synaptosomes of age-matched wild-type (WT) mice. High NOX activity in primary cortical and striatal neurons of HD140Q/140Q mice correlated with more ROS and neurite swellings. These features and neuronal cell death were markedly reduced by treatment with NOX inhibitors such as diphenyleneiodonium (DPI), apocynin (APO) and VAS2870. The rise in ROS levels in mitochondria of HD140Q/140Q neurons followed the rise in NOX activity and inhibiting only mitochondrial ROS was not neuroprotective. Mutant Htt colocalized at plasma membrane lipid rafts with gp91-phox, a catalytic subunit for the NOX2 isoform. Assembly of NOX2 components at lipid rafts requires activation of Rac1 which was also elevated in HD140Q/140Q neurons. HD140Q/140Q mice bred to gp91-phox knock-out mice had lower NOX activity in the brain and in primary neurons, and neurons had normal ROS levels and significantly improved survival. These findings suggest that increased NOX2 activity at lipid rafts is an early and major source of oxidative stress and cell death in HD140Q/140Q neurons. PMID:23223017

  6. Abnormal motor cortex plasticity in premanifest and very early manifest Huntington's disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orth, M; Schippling, S; Schneider, SA; Bhatia, KP; Talelli, P; Tabrizi, SJ; Rothwell, JC

    2010-01-01

    Background Cognition is affected early in Huntington's disease, and in HD animal models there is evidence that this reflects abnormal synaptic plasticity. We investigated whether there is evidence for abnormal synaptic plasticity using the human motor cortex-rTMS model, and if so, if there is any difference between premanifest HD gene carriers and very early manifest HD patients or any relationship with ratings of the severity of motor signs. Methods Fifteen HD gene carriers (7 premanifest, 8 very early manifest) and 14 control participants were given a continuous train of 100 bursts of theta burst stimulation (cTBS: three pulses at 50 Hz and 80% AMT repeated every 200ms). The size of the motor evoked potential was measured at regular intervals until 21 minutes after cTBS. Results HD gene carriers and controls responded differently to theta burst stimulation (F4.9,131.9=1.37, p=0.048) with controls having more inhibition than HD gene carriers (F1,27=13.3, p=0.001). Across all time points mean inhibition differed between the groups (F2,26=6.32, p=0.006); controls had more inhibition than either HD gene carrier subgroup (p=0.006 for premanifest and p=0.009 for early symptomatic) whereas there was no difference between premanifest and early symptomatic HD gene carriers. The measure of cortical plasticity was not associated with any clinical ratings (UHDRS motor score, estimate of age at onset). Conclusions Motor cortex plasticity is abnormal in HD gene carriers but is not closely linked to the development of motor signs of HD. PMID:19828482

  7. Performance of the 12-item WHODAS 2.0 in prodromal Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Ji-In; Long, Jeffrey D; Mills, James A; Downing, Nancy; Williams, Janet K; Paulsen, Jane S

    2015-11-01

    The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), recommends the World Health Organization Disability Assessment Schedule (WHODAS) 2.0 for routine clinical use. We tested the utility of the 12-item WHODAS 2.0 in prodromal Huntington disease. Using data from 726 participants and 630 companions over a 3-year follow-up, linear mixed models were fitted to test (1) baseline and longitudinal differences by progression group; (2) participant and companion differences within each group; and (3) sensitivity of the 12-item WHODAS in comparison to the 36-item WHODAS and the Total Functional Capacity (TFC) score from the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale. Participants showed baseline group differences whereas companions showed baseline and longitudinal group differences. Companions reported worse functional decline over time than participants as the disease progresses. The 12-item WHODAS detected longitudinal change better than the 36-item WHODAS and the TFC in the medium progression group. Results suggest the 12-item WHODAS 2.0 can detect baseline and longitudinal differences in prodromal HD and may be useful in HD clinical trials.

  8. Motor onset and diagnosis in Huntington disease using the diagnostic confidence level.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Dawei; Long, Jeffrey D; Zhang, Ying; Raymond, Lynn A; Marder, Karen; Rosser, Anne; McCusker, Elizabeth A; Mills, James A; Paulsen, Jane S

    2015-12-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by motor dysfunction, cognitive deterioration, and psychiatric symptoms, with progressive motor impairments being a prominent feature. The primary objectives of this study are to delineate the disease course of motor function in HD, to provide estimates of the onset of motor impairments and motor diagnosis, and to examine the effects of genetic and demographic variables on the progression of motor impairments. Data from an international multisite, longitudinal observational study of 905 prodromal HD participants with cytosine-adenine-guanine (CAG) repeats of at least 36 and with at least two visits during the followup period from 2001 to 2012 was examined for changes in the diagnostic confidence level from the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale. HD progression from unimpaired to impaired motor function, as well as the progression from motor impairment to diagnosis, was associated with the linear effect of age and CAG repeat length. Specifically, for every 1-year increase in age, the risk of transition in diagnostic confidence level increased by 11% (95% CI 7-15%) and for one repeat length increase in CAG, the risk of transition in diagnostic confidence level increased by 47% (95% CI 27-69%). Findings show that CAG repeat length and age increased the likelihood of the first onset of motor impairment as well as the age at diagnosis. Results suggest that more accurate estimates of HD onset age can be obtained by incorporating the current status of diagnostic confidence level into predictive models.

  9. Balancing needs as a family caregiver in Huntington's disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Røthing, Merete; Malterud, Kirsti; Frich, Jan C.

    2015-01-01

    Family members in families with severe chronic disease play importantroles in care-giving. In families affected by Huntington’s disease (HD), caregivers encounter practical and emotional challenges and distress.Enduring caregiver burdens may lead to problems and caregivers are inneed of social...... support and health services to deal with challenges. Wewanted to explore coping strategies and behaviour patterns used byfamily caregivers to care for themselves, while caring for a familymember with HD. Participants were recruited from hospitals andcommunity-based healthcare. The sample represents...... various coping strategies, adjusted to the stage and progression ofHD. They tried to regulate information about the disease, balancingconsiderations for protection and disclosure, within and outside thefamily. The participants made efforts to maintain a balance between theirown needs in everyday life...

  10. COMT Val158Met Polymorphism Modulates Huntington's Disease Progression

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rebeix, Isabelle; Dupoux, Emmanuel; Durr, Alexandra; Brice, Alexis; Charles, Perrine; Cleret de Langavant, Laurent; Youssov, Katia; Verny, Christophe; Damotte, Vincent; Azulay, Jean-Philippe; Goizet, Cyril; Simonin, Clémence; Tranchant, Christine; Maison, Patrick; Rialland, Amandine; Schmitz, David; Jacquemot, Charlotte; Fontaine, Bertrand; Bachoud-Lévi, Anne-Catherine

    2016-01-01

    Little is known about the genetic factors modulating the progression of Huntington’s disease (HD). Dopamine levels are affected in HD and modulate executive functions, the main cognitive disorder of HD. We investigated whether the Val158Met polymorphism of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene, which influences dopamine (DA) degradation, affects clinical progression in HD. We carried out a prospective longitudinal multicenter study from 1994 to 2011, on 438 HD gene carriers at different stages of the disease (34 pre-manifest; 172 stage 1; 130 stage 2; 80 stage 3; 17 stage 4; and 5 stage 5), according to Total Functional Capacity (TFC) score. We used the Unified Huntington’s Disease Rating Scale to evaluate motor, cognitive, behavioral and functional decline. We genotyped participants for COMT polymorphism (107 Met-homozygous, 114 Val-homozygous and 217 heterozygous). 367 controls of similar ancestry were also genotyped. We compared clinical progression, on each domain, between groups of COMT polymorphisms, using latent-class mixed models accounting for disease duration and number of CAG (cytosine adenine guanine) repeats. We show that HD gene carriers with fewer CAG repeats and with the Val allele in COMT polymorphism displayed slower cognitive decline. The rate of cognitive decline was greater for Met/Met homozygotes, which displayed a better maintenance of cognitive capacity in earlier stages of the disease, but had a worse performance than Val allele carriers later on. COMT polymorphism did not significantly impact functional and behavioral performance. Since COMT polymorphism influences progression in HD, it could be used for stratification in future clinical trials. Moreover, DA treatments based on the specific COMT polymorphism and adapted according to disease duration could potentially slow HD progression. PMID:27657697

  11. Metabolic network as a progression biomarker of premanifest Huntington's disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tang, Chris C.; Feigin, Andrew; Ma, Yilong; Habeck, Christian; Paulsen, Jane S.; Leenders, Klaus L.; Teune, Laura K.; van Oostrom, Joost C. H.; Guttman, Mark; Dhawan, Vijay; Eidelberg, David

    Background. The evaluation of effective disease-modifying therapies for neurodegenerative disorders relies on objective and accurate measures of progression in at-risk individuals. Here we used a computational approach to identify a functional brain network associated with the progression of

  12. modelling gait syndrome in huntington's disease: the genetic ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    HOD

    motor function, in order to obtain a favorable impact on sufferers' quality of life[4, 12]. Electroconvulsive therapy has been shown to resuscitate dead brain tissues in. Parkinson's disease[4]. For a proper application of the electroconvulsive therapy, a clear understanding of the gait mechanism must be sort. It is in line with this.

  13. Transplantation of induced pluripotent stem cells improves functional recovery in Huntington's disease rat model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mu, Shuhua; Wang, Jiachuan; Zhou, Guangqian; Peng, Wenda; He, Zhendan; Zhao, Zhenfu; Mo, CuiPing; Qu, Junle; Zhang, Jian

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine the functional recovery of the transplanted induced pluripotent stem cells in a rat model of Huntington's disease with use of 18F-FDG microPET/CT imaging. In a quinolinic acid-induced rat model of striatal degeneration, induced pluripotent stem cells were transplanted into the ipsilateral lateral ventricle ten days after the quinolinic acid injection. The response to the treatment was evaluated by serial 18F-FDG PET/CT scans and Morris water maze test. Histological analyses and Western blotting were performed six weeks after stem cell transplantation. After induced pluripotent stem cells transplantation, higher 18F-FDG accumulation in the injured striatum was observed during the 4 to 6-weeks period compared with the quinolinic acid-injected group, suggesting the metabolic recovery of injured striatum. The induced pluripotent stem cells transplantation improved learning and memory function (and striatal atrophy) of the rat in six week in the comparison with the quinolinic acid-treated controls. In addition, immunohistochemical analysis demonstrated that transplanted stem cells survived and migrated into the lesioned area in striatum, and most of the stem cells expressed protein markers of neurons and glial cells. Our findings show that induced pluripotent stem cells can survive, differentiate to functional neurons and improve partial striatal function and metabolism after implantation in a rat Huntington's disease model.

  14. Adenyl cyclase activator forskolin protects against Huntington's disease-like neurodegenerative disorders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sidharth Mehan

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Long term suppression of succinate dehydrogenase by selective inhibitor 3-nitropropionic acid has been used in rodents to model Huntington's disease where mitochondrial dysfunction and oxidative damages are primary pathological hallmarks for neuronal damage. Improvements in learning and memory abilities, recovery of energy levels, and reduction of excitotoxicity damage can be achieved through activation of Adenyl cyclase enzyme by a specific phytochemical forskolin. In this study, intraperitoneal administration of 10 mg/kg 3-nitropropionic acid for 15 days in rats notably reduced body weight, worsened motor cocordination (grip strength, beam crossing task, locomotor activity, resulted in learning and memory deficits, greatly increased acetylcholinesterase, lactate dehydrogenase, nitrite, and malondialdehyde levels, obviously decreased adenosine triphosphate, succinate dehydrogenase, superoxide dismutase, catalase, and reduced glutathione levels in the striatum, cortex and hippocampus. Intragastric administration of forskolin at 10, 20, 30 mg/kg dose-dependently reversed these behavioral, biochemical and pathological changes caused by 3-nitropropionic acid. These results suggest that forskolin exhibits neuroprotective effects on 3-nitropropionic acid-induced Huntington's disease-like neurodegeneration.

  15. Selective vulnerability of Rich Club brain regions is an organizational principle of structural connectivity loss in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McColgan, Peter; Seunarine, Kiran K; Razi, Adeel; Cole, James H; Gregory, Sarah; Durr, Alexandra; Roos, Raymund A C; Stout, Julie C; Landwehrmeyer, Bernhard; Scahill, Rachael I; Clark, Chris A; Rees, Geraint; Tabrizi, Sarah J

    2015-11-01

    Huntington's disease can be predicted many years before symptom onset, and thus makes an ideal model for studying the earliest mechanisms of neurodegeneration. Diffuse patterns of structural connectivity loss occur in the basal ganglia and cortex early in the disease. However, the organizational principles that underlie these changes are unclear. By understanding such principles we can gain insight into the link between the cellular pathology caused by mutant huntingtin and its downstream effect at the macroscopic level. The 'rich club' is a pattern of organization established in healthy human brains, where specific hub 'rich club' brain regions are more highly connected to each other than other brain regions. We hypothesized that selective loss of rich club connectivity might represent an organizing principle underlying the distributed pattern of structural connectivity loss seen in Huntington's disease. To test this hypothesis we performed diffusion tractography and graph theoretical analysis in a pseudo-longitudinal study of 50 premanifest and 38 manifest Huntington's disease participants compared with 47 healthy controls. Consistent with our hypothesis we found that structural connectivity loss selectively affected rich club brain regions in premanifest and manifest Huntington's disease participants compared with controls. We found progressive network changes across controls, premanifest Huntington's disease and manifest Huntington's disease characterized by increased network segregation in the premanifest stage and loss of network integration in manifest disease. These regional and whole brain network differences were highly correlated with cognitive and motor deficits suggesting they have pathophysiological relevance. We also observed greater reductions in the connectivity of brain regions that have higher network traffic and lower clustering of neighbouring regions. This provides a potential mechanism that results in a characteristic pattern of structural

  16. Internal consistency of a Brazilian version of the unified Huntington's disease rating scale Consistência interna da versão brasileira da escala unificada para avaliação da doença da Huntington

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    Vitor Tumas

    2004-12-01

    Full Text Available We evaluated the reliability of a translated Brazilian version of the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS to establish the reproducibility of the scale in a population that differs substantially from that on which the scale was originally validated. After a training period with the video and guidelines requested from the Huntington Study Group, we applied the UHDRS, except for the cognitive tests, to a group of 21 Brazilian patients with a molecular diagnosis of Huntington's disease (HD. We found a high degree of internal consistency of the motor section of the UHDRS (Cronbach's alpha= 0.841. There was a negative correlation between the total motor score and the functional assessment, the independence scale and the functional capacity. There was a positive correlation between these 3 scales of functional evaluation and a negative correlation between the age of onset of the disease and the number of CAG repeats. The behavioral scale and disease duration were not correlated with any factor. The clinical characteristics of this sample of patients as described by the UHDRS were roughly similar to those reported in the original validation studies and the correlations described were similar to those reported previously. We conclude that the Brazilian version of the UHDRS is reliable and valid to study patients with HD in the Brazilian setting, that this sample of Brazilian patients had clinical characteristics similar to those observed in other world regions, as expected, and that the clinical training method used for the application of the UHDRS was effective to insure a high degree of clinical reproducibility.Nosso estudo avaliou a confiabilidade da versão brasileira da escala unificada para avaliação da doença de Huntington (UHDRS com o objetivo de estabelecer a reprodutibilidade dessa escala em uma população que difere significativamente daquela em que foi originalmente validada. Após um período de treinamento com um v

  17. Factors related to genetic testing in adults at risk for Huntington disease: the prospective Huntington at-risk observational study (PHAROS).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quaid, K A; Eberly, S W; Kayson-Rubin, E; Oakes, D; Shoulson, I

    2017-06-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is a late onset ultimately fatal neurodegenerative disorder caused by a cytosine-adenine-guanine ( CAG) triplet repeat expansion in the Huntingtin gene which was discovered in 1993. The PHAROS study is a unique observational study of 1001 individuals at risk for HD who had not been previously tested for HD and who had no plans to do so. In this cohort, 104 (10%) individuals changed their minds and chose to be tested during the course of the study but outside of the study protocol. Baseline behavioral scores, especially apathy, were more strongly associated with later genetic testing than motor and chorea scores, particularly among subjects with expanded CAG repeat length. In the CAG expanded group, those choosing to be tested were older and had more chorea and higher scores on the behavioral section of the unified Huntington's disease rating scale at baseline than those not choosing to be tested. Following genetic testing, 56% of subjects with CAG < 37 had less depression when compared to prior to testing, but depression generally stayed the same or increased for 64% of subjects in the expanded group. This finding suggests that approaches to testing must continue to be cautious, with appropriate medical, psychological and social support. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  18. The phasor-FLIM fingerprints reveal shifts from OXPHOS to enhanced glycolysis in Huntington Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sameni, Sara; Syed, Adeela; Marsh, J. Lawrence; Digman, Michelle A.

    2016-10-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is an autosomal neurodegenerative disorder caused by the expansion of Polyglutamine (polyQ) in exon 1 of the Huntingtin protein. Glutamine repeats below 36 are considered normal while repeats above 40 lead to HD. Impairment in energy metabolism is a common trend in Huntington pathogenesis; however, this effect is not fully understood. Here, we used the phasor approach and Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging Microscopy (FLIM) to measure changes between free and bound fractions of NADH as a indirect measure of metabolic alteration in living cells. Using Phasor-FLIM, pixel maps of metabolic alteration in HEK293 cell lines and in transgenic Drosophila expressing expanded and unexpanded polyQ HTT exon1 in the eye disc were developed. We found a significant shift towards increased free NADH, indicating an increased glycolytic state for cells and tissues expressing the expanded polyQ compared to unexpanded control. In the nucleus, a further lifetime shift occurs towards higher free NADH suggesting a possible synergism between metabolic dysfunction and transcriptional regulation. Our results indicate that metabolic dysfunction in HD shifts to increased glycolysis leading to oxidative stress and cell death. This powerful label free method can be used to screen native HD tissue samples and for potential drug screening.

  19. Applying the WHO ICF Framework to Communication Assessment and Goal Setting in Huntington's Disease: A Case Discussion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Power, Emma; Anderson, Alison; Togher, Leanne

    2011-01-01

    Purpose: Huntington's Disease (HD) is a fatal, hereditary neurodegenerative disorder that is characterized by a triad of motor, cognitive and psychiatric symptoms that impact on both communicative effectiveness and the treatment techniques used to maximize communicative participation. The purpose of this article is to describe the application of…

  20. Detection of early behavioral markers of Huntington's disease in R6/2 mice employing an automated social home cage

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rudenko, Olga; Tkach, Vadim; Berezin, Vladimir

    2009-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is an autosomal-dominant neurodegenerative disorder, for which no known cure or effective treatment exists. To facilitate the search for new potential treatments of HD, an automated system for analyzing the behavior of transgenic HD mice is urgently needed. A recently...

  1. A genome-scale RNA-interference screen identifies RRAS signaling as a pathologic feature of Huntington's disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John P Miller

    Full Text Available A genome-scale RNAi screen was performed in a mammalian cell-based assay to identify modifiers of mutant huntingtin toxicity. Ontology analysis of suppressor data identified processes previously implicated in Huntington's disease, including proteolysis, glutamate excitotoxicity, and mitochondrial dysfunction. In addition to established mechanisms, the screen identified multiple components of the RRAS signaling pathway as loss-of-function suppressors of mutant huntingtin toxicity in human and mouse cell models. Loss-of-function in orthologous RRAS pathway members also suppressed motor dysfunction in a Drosophila model of Huntington's disease. Abnormal activation of RRAS and a down-stream effector, RAF1, was observed in cellular models and a mouse model of Huntington's disease. We also observe co-localization of RRAS and mutant huntingtin in cells and in mouse striatum, suggesting that activation of R-Ras may occur through protein interaction. These data indicate that mutant huntingtin exerts a pathogenic effect on this pathway that can be corrected at multiple intervention points including RRAS, FNTA/B, PIN1, and PLK1. Consistent with these results, chemical inhibition of farnesyltransferase can also suppress mutant huntingtin toxicity. These data suggest that pharmacological inhibition of RRAS signaling may confer therapeutic benefit in Huntington's disease.

  2. ULK1-mediated phosphorylation of ATG14 promotes autophagy and is impaired in Huntington's disease models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wold, Mitchell S; Lim, Junghyun; Lachance, Véronik; Deng, Zhiqiang; Yue, Zhenyu

    2016-12-09

    Autophagy is a bulk degradation pathway for long-lived proteins, protein aggregates, and damaged organelles. ULK1 protein kinase and Vps34 lipid kinase are two key autophagy regulators that are critical for autophagosome biogenesis. However, it isn't fully understood how ULK1 regulates Vps34, especially in the context of disease. Polyglutamine expansion in huntingtin (Htt) causes aberrant accumulation of the aggregated protein and disrupts various cellular pathways including autophagy, a lysosomal degradation pathway, underlying the pathogenesis of Huntington's disease (HD). Although autophagic clearance of Htt aggregates is under investigation as therapeutic strategy for HD, the precise mechanism of autophagy impairment remains poorly understood. Moreover, in-vivo assays of autophagy have been particularly challenging due to lack of reliable and robust molecular biomarkers. We generated anti-phosphorylated ATG14 antibody to determine ATG14-mediated autophagy regulation; we employed Huntington's disease (HD) genetic cell models and animal models as well as autophagy reporter animal model to understand autophagy signaling and regulation in vivo. We applied biochemical analysis and molecular biology approaches to dissect the alteration of autophagy kinase activity and regulation. Here, we demonstrate that ULK1 phosphorylates ATG14 at serine 29 in an mTOR-dependent manner. This phosphorylation critically regulates ATG14-Vps34 lipid kinase activity to control autophagy level. We also show that ATG14-associated Vps34 activity and ULK1-mediated phosphorylation of ATG14 and Beclin 1 are compromised in the Q175 mouse model of Huntington's disease. Finally, we show that ATG14 phosphorylation is decreased during general proteotoxic stress caused by proteasomal inhibition. This reduction of the specific phosphorylation of ATG14 and Beclin 1 is mediated, in part, by p62-induced sequestration of ULK1 to an insoluble cellular fraction. We show that increased ULK1 levels and

  3. Safety, tolerability, and efficacy of PBT2 in Huntington's disease: a phase 2, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-01-01

    PBT2 is a metal protein-attenuating compound that might reduce metal-induced aggregation of mutant huntingtin and has prolonged survival in a mouse model of Huntington's disease. We aimed to assess the safety, tolerability, and efficacy of PBT2 in patients with Huntington's disease. In this 26-week, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, adults (≥25 years old) with early-stage to mid-stage Huntington's disease were randomly assigned (1:1:1) by a centralised interactive response system to once daily PBT2 250 mg, PBT2 100 mg, or placebo. Randomisation was stratified by site with a block size of three. Participants, carers, the steering committee, site investigators, study staff, and the study sponsor were masked to treatment assignment. Primary endpoints were safety and tolerability. The safety population consisted of all participants who were randomly assigned and had at least one dose of study drug. The principal secondary endpoint was cognition, measured by the change from baseline to week 26 in the main composite Z score of five cognitive tests (Category Fluency Test, Trail Making Test Part B, Map Search, Symbol Digit Modalities Test, and Stroop Word Reading Test) and scores on eight individual cognitive tests (the five aforementioned plus the Trail Making Test Part A, Montreal Cognitive Assessment, and the Speeded Tapping Test). The intention-to-treat population comprised participants who were randomly assigned and had at least one efficacy assessment after administration of study drug. This trial is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT01590888. Between April 18, 2012, and Dec 14, 2012, 109 participants were randomly assigned to PBT2 250 mg (n=36), PBT2 100 mg (n=38), or placebo (n=35) at 19 research centres in Australia and the USA. 32 (89%) individuals on PBT2 250 mg, 38 (100%) on PBT2 100 mg, and 34 (97%) on placebo completed the study. Six serious adverse events (acute coronary syndrome, major depression, pneumonia, suicide attempt, viral

  4. Impaired ubiquitin-proteasome system activity in the synapses of Huntington's disease mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jianjun; Wang, Chuan-En; Orr, Adam; Tydlacka, Suzanne; Li, Shi-Hua; Li, Xiao-Jiang

    2008-03-24

    Huntington's disease (HD) is caused by the expansion of a polyglutamine tract in the N-terminal region of huntingtin (htt) and is characterized by selective neurodegeneration. In addition to forming nuclear aggregates, mutant htt accumulates in neuronal processes as well as synapses and affects synaptic function. However, the mechanism for the synaptic toxicity of mutant htt remains to be investigated. We targeted fluorescent reporters for the ubiquitin-proteasome system (UPS) to presynaptic or postsynaptic terminals of neurons. Using these reporters and biochemical assays of isolated synaptosomes, we found that mutant htt decreases synaptic UPS activity in cultured neurons and in HD mouse brains that express N-terminal or full-length mutant htt. Given that the UPS is a key regulator of synaptic plasticity and function, our findings offer insight into the selective neuronal dysfunction seen in HD and also establish a method to measure synaptic UPS activity in other neurological disease models.

  5. Impaired ubiquitin–proteasome system activity in the synapses of Huntington's disease mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jianjun; Wang, Chuan-En; Orr, Adam; Tydlacka, Suzanne; Li, Shi-Hua; Li, Xiao-Jiang

    2008-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is caused by the expansion of a polyglutamine tract in the N-terminal region of huntingtin (htt) and is characterized by selective neurodegeneration. In addition to forming nuclear aggregates, mutant htt accumulates in neuronal processes as well as synapses and affects synaptic function. However, the mechanism for the synaptic toxicity of mutant htt remains to be investigated. We targeted fluorescent reporters for the ubiquitin–proteasome system (UPS) to presynaptic or postsynaptic terminals of neurons. Using these reporters and biochemical assays of isolated synaptosomes, we found that mutant htt decreases synaptic UPS activity in cultured neurons and in HD mouse brains that express N-terminal or full-length mutant htt. Given that the UPS is a key regulator of synaptic plasticity and function, our findings offer insight into the selective neuronal dysfunction seen in HD and also establish a method to measure synaptic UPS activity in other neurological disease models. PMID:18362179

  6. Body weight is a robust predictor of clinical progression in Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Burg, Jorien M M; Gardiner, Sarah L; Ludolph, Albert C; Landwehrmeyer, G Bernhard; Roos, Raymund A C; Aziz, N Ahmad

    2017-09-01

    Unintended weight loss is a hallmark of Huntington disease (HD), but it is unknown to what extent weight loss impacts the rate of disease progression. Therefore, using longitudinal data from the Enroll-HD study, we assessed the association between baseline body mass index (BMI) and the rate of clinical progression in 5,821 HD mutation carriers. We found that high baseline BMI was associated with a significantly slower rate of functional, motor, and cognitive deterioration (all p < 0.001), independent of mutant HTT CAG repeat size. Our findings provide strong rationale for exploration of systemic metabolism as a therapeutic target in HD. Ann Neurol 2017;82:479-483. © 2017 American Neurological Association.

  7. Oxidative Stress and Huntington's Disease: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Amit; Ratan, Rajiv R

    2016-10-01

    Redox homeostasis is crucial for proper cellular functions, including receptor tyrosine kinase signaling, protein folding, and xenobiotic detoxification. Under basal conditions, there is a balance between oxidants and antioxidants. This balance facilitates the ability of oxidants, such as reactive oxygen species, to play critical regulatory functions through a direct modification of a small number of amino acids (e.g. cysteine) on signaling proteins. These signaling functions leverage tight spatial, amplitude, and temporal control of oxidant concentrations. However, when oxidants overwhelm the antioxidant capacity, they lead to a harmful condition of oxidative stress. Oxidative stress has long been held to be one of the key players in disease progression for Huntington's disease (HD). In this review, we will critically review this evidence, drawing some intermediate conclusions, and ultimately provide a framework for thinking about the role of oxidative stress in the pathophysiology of HD.

  8. First molecular modeling report on novel arylpyrimidine kynurenine monooxygenase inhibitors through multi-QSAR analysis against Huntington's disease: A proposal to chemists!

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amin, Sk Abdul; Adhikari, Nilanjan; Jha, Tarun; Gayen, Shovanlal

    2016-12-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is caused by mutation of huntingtin protein (mHtt) leading to neuronal cell death. The mHtt induced toxicity can be rescued by inhibiting the kynurenine monooxygenase (KMO) enzyme. Therefore, KMO is a promising drug target to address the neurodegenerative disorders such as Huntington's diseases. Fiftysix arylpyrimidine KMO inhibitors are structurally explored through regression and classification based multi-QSAR modeling, pharmacophore mapping and molecular docking approaches. Moreover, ten new compounds are proposed and validated through the modeling that may be effective in accelerating Huntington's disease drug discovery efforts. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Somatostatin receptor 1 and 5 double knockout mice mimic neurochemical changes of Huntington's disease transgenic mice.

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    Padmesh S Rajput

    Full Text Available Selective degeneration of medium spiny neurons and preservation of medium sized aspiny interneurons in striatum has been implicated in excitotoxicity and pathophysiology of Huntington's disease (HD. However, the molecular mechanism for the selective sparing of medium sized aspiny neurons and vulnerability of projection neurons is still elusive. The pathological characteristic of HD is an extensive reduction of the striatal mass, affecting caudate putamen. Somatostatin (SST positive neurons are selectively spared in HD and Quinolinic acid/N-methyl-D-aspartic acid induced excitotoxicity, mimic the model of HD. SST plays neuroprotective role in excitotoxicity and the biological effects of SST are mediated by five somatostatin receptor subtypes (SSTR1-5.To delineate subtype selective biological responses we have here investigated changes in SSTR1 and 5 double knockout mice brain and compared with HD transgenic mouse model (R6/2. Our study revealed significant loss of dopamine and cAMP regulated phosphoprotein of 32 kDa (DARPP-32 and comparable changes in SST, N-methyl-D-aspartic acid receptors subtypes, calbindin and brain nitric oxide synthase expression as well as in key signaling proteins including calpain, phospho-extracellular-signal-regulated kinases1/2, synapsin-IIa, protein kinase C-α and calcineurin in SSTR1/5(-/- and R6/2 mice. Conversely, the expression of somatostatin receptor subtypes, enkephalin and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinases were strain specific. SSTR1/5 appears to be important in regulating NMDARs, DARPP-32 and signaling molecules in similar fashion as seen in HD transgenic mice.This is the first comprehensive description of disease related changes upon ablation of G- protein coupled receptor gene. Our results indicate that SST and SSTRs might play an important role in regulation of neurodegeneration and targeting this pathway can provide a novel insight in understanding the pathophysiology of Huntington's disease.

  10. Deutetrabenazine: Treatment of hyperkinetic aspects of Huntington's disease, tardive dyskinesia and Tourette syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paton, D M

    2017-02-01

    Deutetrabenazine is a derivative of tetrabenazine in which two trideuteromethoxy groups substitute two methoxy groups. The active metabolites of deutetrabenazine have a longer half-life than those of tetrabenazine, together with a greater overall absorption. However, the peak plasma concentrations are lower. Because of these pharmacokinetic differences, deutetrabenazine can be given twice daily, thus improving compliance. The lower peak concentrations may account for a lower incidence of some unwanted adverse effects. Unlike tetrabenazine, deutetrabenazine has no effect on the QT interval. Treatment with deutetrabenazine significantly improved chorea in Huntington's disease, the hyperkinetic features of tardive dyskinesia, and tics in Tourette syndrome. In all three conditions, deutetrabenazine produced an acceptable level of overall adverse effects without causing any severe adverse effects. Copyright 2017 Clarivate Analytics.

  11. Psychiatric and cognitive symptoms in Huntington's disease are modified by polymorphisms in catecholamine regulating enzyme genes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vinther-Jensen, T; Nielsen, Troels Tolstrup; Budtz-Jørgensen, E

    2016-01-01

    previously been shown in HD, and furthermore dopamine is thought to be implicated in cognition, behavioral and motor disturbances. A substantiated inverse correlation between motor onset and the elongated CAG repeat in the HTT has been established. This relation does not account for the full variability......Huntington's disease (HD) is an autosomal dominantly inherited neurodegenerative disorder characterized by motor, psychiatric, and cognitive manifestations. HD is caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the Huntingtin (HTT) gene but the exact pathogenesis remains unknown. Dopamine imbalance has...... of the motor onset, and efforts have been put into finding genetic modifiers of motor onset, however, mostly with unsuccessful outcome. In this study, we took an alternative approach focusing on symptom complexes and searched for modifiers of cognitive impairment and psychiatric symptoms in a well...

  12. Neuroprotective effects of probenecid in a transgenic animal model of Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vamos, Eniko; Voros, Krisztina; Zadori, Denes; Vecsei, Laszlo; Klivenyi, Peter

    2009-09-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is an autosomal dominantly inherited disorder, caused by an expanded polyglutamine region of a protein called huntingtin. The excitotoxicity, oxidative damage and altered membrane transport may have an important role in the pathogenesis of HD. Probenecid is a non-selective inhibitor of multidrug resistance-associated proteins, but it also inhibits organic anion transporters. In this study, we examined the effects of probenecid on the survival, behaviour and immunohistochemical changes in the N171-82Q transgenic mouse model of HD. After probenecid administration, the duration of survival improved by 35%. The motor activity was significantly ameliorated as compared with the control transgenic group. Probenecid treatment significantly reduced the neuronal loss and the number of neuronal intranuclear aggregates. These results suggest that probenecid may exert a neuroprotective effect by increasing the membrane transport of protective compounds, and/or inhibiting the toxic compounds.

  13. Synthetic lethal screening in the mammalian central nervous system identifies Gpx6 as a modulator of Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shema, Reut; Kulicke, Ruth; Cowley, Glenn S; Stein, Rachael; Root, David E; Heiman, Myriam

    2015-01-06

    Huntington's disease, the most common inherited neurodegenerative disease, is characterized by a dramatic loss of deep-layer cortical and striatal neurons, as well as morbidity in midlife. Human genetic studies led to the identification of the causative gene, huntingtin. Recent genomic advances have also led to the identification of hundreds of potential interacting partners for huntingtin protein and many hypotheses as to the molecular mechanisms whereby mutant huntingtin leads to cellular dysfunction and death. However, the multitude of possible interacting partners and cellular pathways affected by mutant huntingtin has complicated efforts to understand the etiology of this disease, and to date no curative therapeutic exists. To address the general problem of identifying the disease-phenotype contributing genes from a large number of correlative studies, here we develop a synthetic lethal screening methodology for the mammalian central nervous system, called SLIC, for synthetic lethal in the central nervous system. Applying SLIC to the study of Huntington's disease, we identify the age-regulated glutathione peroxidase 6 (Gpx6) gene as a modulator of mutant huntingtin toxicity and show that overexpression of Gpx6 can dramatically alleviate both behavioral and molecular phenotypes associated with a mouse model of Huntington's disease. SLIC can, in principle, be used in the study of any neurodegenerative disease for which a mouse model exists, promising to reveal modulators of neurodegenerative disease in an unbiased fashion, akin to screens in simpler model organisms.

  14. Problems assessing uptake of Huntington disease predictive testing and a proposed solution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tassicker, Roslyn J; Teltscher, Betty; Trembath, M Kaye; Collins, Veronica; Sheffield, Leslie J; Chiu, Edmond; Gurrin, Lyle; Delatycki, Martin B

    2009-01-01

    The uptake of predictive testing for Huntington disease informs our understanding of decision making by those at risk and assists with planning for service provision. Uptake figures have been reported from several centers based on the total number of people who have undertaken predictive testing as a percentage of those estimated to be at 50% risk in the region. This method produced a figure of 35% from our own service, much higher than observation of the local pedigrees indicated, and higher than other published reports. We have identified some errors in the commonly used formula. The major errors are the use of the cumulative total of those who have had testing with a static denominator of those at 50% risk, and the failure to exclude from the at-risk group those who are too young and therefore ineligible to test. We report data from the Huntington Disease Register of Victoria and estimate the prevalence to be 8 per 100 000 in 1999. Additional data on individuals at risk were collated. We found that for every diagnosed person there were 4.2 individuals at 50% risk, a lower ratio than one to five hypothesized in the literature. We examined these ratios in the context of uptake.Significantly, we provide a solution to the calculation of uptake with a formula that factors in a dynamic denominator and corrects for the number of years testing has been offered. Using this formula, we calculated an uptake of 13.0–15.4% for the state of Victoria, Australia. This formula can be used to compare uptake across different centers. PMID:18665196

  15. Blue light therapy improves circadian dysfunction as well as motor symptoms in two mouse models of Huntington's disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huei-Bin Wang

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Patients with Huntington's disease (HD exhibit movement disorders, psychiatric disturbance and cognitive impairments as the disease progresses. Abnormal sleep/wake cycles are common among HD patients with reports of delayed sleep onset, fatigue during the day, and a delayed pattern of melatonin secretion all of which suggest circadian dysfunction. Mouse models of HD confirm disrupted circadian rhythms with pathophysiology found in the central circadian clock (suprachiasmatic nucleus. Importantly, circadian dysfunction manifests early in disease, even before the classic motor symptoms, in both patients and mouse models. Therefore, we hypothesize that the circadian dysfunction may interact with the disease pathology and exacerbate the HD symptoms. If correct, early intervention may benefit patients and delay disease progression. One test of this hypothesis is to determine whether light therapy designed to strengthen this intrinsic timing system can delay the disease progression in mouse models. Therefore, we determined the impact of blue wavelength-enriched light on two HD models: the BACHD and Q175 mice. Both models received 6 h of blue-light at the beginning of their daily light cycle for 3 months. After treatment, both genotypes showed improvements in their locomotor activity rhythm without significant change to their sleep behavior. Critically, treated mice of both lines exhibited improved motor performance compared to untreated controls. Focusing on the Q175 genotype, we sought to determine whether the treatment altered signaling pathways in brain regions known to be impacted by HD using NanoString gene expression assays. We found that the expression of several HD relevant markers was altered in the striatum and cortex of the treated mice. Our study demonstrates that strengthening the circadian system can delay the progression of HD in pre-clinical models. This work suggests that lighting conditions should be considered when managing

  16. Perturbations in the p53/miR-34a/SIRT1 pathway in the R6/2 Huntington's disease model

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Reynolds, Regina Hertfelder; Petersen, Maria Hvidberg; Willert, Cecilie Wennemoes

    2018-01-01

    of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Thus, this regulatory network holds potential importance for the pathophysiology of Huntington's disease (HD), an inherited neurodegenerative disorder in which both mitochondrial dysfunction and impaired neurotrophic signalling are observed. We investigated...

  17. Environmental factors as modulators of neurodegeneration: insights from gene-environment interactions in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mo, Christina; Hannan, Anthony J; Renoir, Thibault

    2015-05-01

    Unlike many other neurodegenerative diseases with established gene-environment interactions, Huntington's disease (HD) is viewed as a disorder governed by genetics. The cause of the disease is a highly penetrant tandem repeat expansion encoding an extended polyglutamine tract in the huntingtin protein. In the year 2000, a pioneering study showed that the disease could be delayed in transgenic mice by enriched housing conditions. This review describes subsequent human and preclinical studies identifying environmental modulation of motor, cognitive, affective and other symptoms found in HD. Alongside the behavioral observations we also discuss potential mechanisms and the relevance to other neurodegenerative disorders, including Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. In mouse models of HD, increased sensorimotor and cognitive stimulation can delay or ameliorate various endophenotypes. Potential mechanisms include increased trophic support, synaptic plasticity, adult neurogenesis, and other forms of experience-dependent cellular plasticity. Subsequent clinical investigations support a role for lifetime activity levels in modulating the onset and progression of HD. Stress can accelerate memory and olfactory deficits and exacerbate cellular dysfunctions in HD mice. In the absence of effective treatments to slow the course of HD, environmental interventions offer feasible approaches to delay the disease, however further preclinical and human studies are needed in order to generate clinical recommendations. Environmental interventions could be combined with future pharmacological therapies and stimulate the identification of enviromimetics, drugs which mimic or enhance the beneficial effects of cognitive stimulation and physical activity. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  18. Default-mode network changes in Huntington's disease: an integrated MRI study of functional connectivity and morphometry.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mario Quarantelli

    Full Text Available Previous MRI studies of functional connectivity in pre-symptomatic mutation carriers of Huntington's disease (HD have shown dysfunction of the Default-Mode Network (DMN. No data however are currently available on the DMN alterations in the symptomatic stages of the disease, which are characterized by cortical atrophy involving several DMN nodes. We assessed DMN integrity and its possible correlations with motor and cognitive symptoms in 26 symptomatic HD patients as compared to 22 normal volunteers, by analyzing resting state functional MRI data, using the Precuneal Cortex/Posterior Cingulate Cortices (PC/PCC as seed, controlling at voxel level for the effect of atrophy by co-varying for gray matter volume. Direct correlation with PC/PCC was decreased, without correlation with atrophy, in the ventral medial prefrontal cortex (including anterior cingulate and subgenual cortex, right dorso-medial prefrontal cortex, and in the right inferior parietal cortex (mainly involving the angular gyrus. Negative correlations with PC/PCC were decreased bilaterally in the inferior parietal cortices, while a cluster in the right middle occipital gyrus presented increased correlation with PC/PCC. DMN changes in the ventral medial prefrontal cortex significantly correlated with the performance at the Stroop test (p = .0002. Widespread DMN changes, not correlating with the atrophy of the involved nodes, are present in symptomatic HD patients, and correlate with cognitive disturbances.

  19. Neuropathological Comparison of Adult Onset and Juvenile Huntington's Disease with Cerebellar Atrophy: A Report of a Father and Son.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Latimer, Caitlin S; Flanagan, Margaret E; Cimino, Patrick J; Jayadev, Suman; Davis, Marie; Hoffer, Zachary S; Montine, Thomas J; Gonzalez-Cuyar, Luis F; Bird, Thomas D; Keene, C Dirk

    2017-10-11

    Huntington's disease (HD) is an autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disease caused by a trinucleotide (CAG) repeat expansion in huntingtin (HTT) on chromosome 4. Anticipation can cause longer repeat expansions in children of HD patients. Juvenile Huntington's disease (JHD), defined as HD arising before age 20, accounts for 5-10% of HD cases, with cases arising in the first decade accounting for approximately 1%. Clinically, JHD differs from the predominately choreiform adult onset Huntington's disease (AOHD) with variable presentations, including symptoms such as myoclonus, seizures, Parkinsonism, and cognitive decline. The neuropathologic changes of AOHD are well characterized, but there are fewer reports that describe the neuropathology of JHD. Here we report a case of a six-year-old boy with paternally-inherited JHD caused by 169 CAG trinucleotide repeats who presented at age four with developmental delay, dysarthria, and seizures before dying at age 6. The boy's clinical presentation and neuropathological findings are directly compared to those of his father, who presented with AOHD and 54 repeats. A full autopsy was performed for the JHD case and a brain-only autopsy was performed for the AOHD case. Histochemically- and immunohistochemically-stained slides were prepared from formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded tissue sections. Both cases had neuropathology corresponding to Vonsattel grade 3. The boy also had cerebellar atrophy with huntingtin-positive inclusions in the cerebellum, findings not present in the father. Autopsies of father and son provide a unique opportunity to compare and contrast the neuropathologic findings of juvenile and adult onset HD while also providing the first immunohistochemical evidence of cerebellar involvement in JHD. Additionally this is the first known report to include findings from peripheral tissue in a case of JHD.

  20. The Right to Ignore Genetic Risk in the Genomic Era - Prenatal testing for Huntington Disease as a paradigm

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    Erez, Ayelet; Plunkett, Katie; Sutton, V. Reid; McGuire, Amy L

    2013-01-01

    During the last decade, the field of human genome research has gone through a phase of rapid discovery that has provided scientists and physicians with a wide variety of research tools that are applicable to important medical issues. We describe a case of familial Huntington disease (HD), where the proband at risk preferred not to know his disease status but wanted to know the status in his unborn child. Once we found the father to be negative, the case raised an important ethical question regarding the management of this as well as future pregnancies. This paper discusses the arguments for and against the right not to know of one’s carrier status, as well as professional obligations in the context of withholding unwanted information that may have direct implications not only for the patient himself but also for other family members. HD has been the gold standard for many other adult onset genetic diseases in terms of carrier testing guidelines. Hence, we feel it is time to revisit the issue of prenatal testing for HD and consider updating the current recommendations regarding the patient’s right to “genetic ignorance”, the right not to know genetic information. PMID:20583190

  1. Degeneration of the Cerebellum in Huntington's Disease (HD) : Possible Relevance for the Clinical Picture and Potential Gateway to Pathological Mechanisms of the Disease Process

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rueb, Udo; Hoche, Franziska; Brunt, Ewout R.; Heinsen, Helmut; Seidel, Kay; Del Turco, Domenico; Paulson, Henry L.; Bohl, Juergen; von Gall, Charlotte; Vonsattel, Jean-Paul; Korf, Horst-Werner; den Dunnen, Wilfred F.

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a polyglutamine disease and characterized neuropathologically by degeneration of the striatum and select layers of the neo- and allocortex. In the present study, we performed a systematic investigation of the cerebellum in eight clinically diagnosed and genetically

  2. Huntington disease: a single-gene degenerative disorder of the striatum.

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    Nopoulos, Peggy C

    2016-03-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is an autosomal dominant, neurodegenerative disorder with a primary etiology of striatal pathology. The Huntingtin gene (HTT) has a unique feature of a DNA trinucleotide (triplet) repeat, with repeat length ranging from 10 to 35 in the normal population. Repeat lengths between 36 and 39 cause HD at reduced penetrance (some will get the disease, others won't) and when expanded to 40 or more repeats (mHTT), causes HD at full penetrance (every person with this length or beyond will definitely develop the disease). The symptoms of HD may be motor, cognitive, and psychiatric, and are consistent with the pathophysiology of frontostriatal circuitry malfunction. Expressed ubiquitously and throughout the entire life cycle (development through adulthood), mHTT causes initial dysfunction and eventual death of a specific cell population within the striatum. Although all areas of the brain are eventually affected, the primary pathology of the disease is regionally specific. As a single-gene disorder, HD has the distinction of having the potential of treatment that is aimed directly at the known pathogenic mechanism by gene silencing, providing hope for neuroprotection and ultimately, prevention.

  3. High-Throughput Automated Phenotyping of Two Genetic Mouse Models of Huntington's Disease.

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    Balci, Fuat; Oakeshott, Stephen; Shamy, Jul Lea; El-Khodor, Bassem F; Filippov, Igor; Mushlin, Richard; Port, Russell; Connor, David; Paintdakhi, Ahmad; Menalled, Liliana; Ramboz, Sylvie; Howland, David; Kwak, Seung; Brunner, Dani

    2013-07-11

    Phenotyping with traditional behavioral assays constitutes a major bottleneck in the primary screening, characterization, and validation of genetic mouse models of disease, leading to downstream delays in drug discovery efforts. We present a novel and comprehensive one-stop approach to phenotyping, the PhenoCube™. This system simultaneously captures the cognitive performance, motor activity, and circadian patterns of group-housed mice by use of home-cage operant conditioning modules (IntelliCage) and custom-built computer vision software. We evaluated two different mouse models of Huntington's Disease (HD), the R6/2 and the BACHD in the PhenoCube™ system. Our results demonstrated that this system can efficiently capture and track alterations in both cognitive performance and locomotor activity patterns associated with these disease models. This work extends our prior demonstration that PhenoCube™ can characterize circadian dysfunction in BACHD mice and shows that this system, with the experimental protocols used, is a sensitive and efficient tool for a first pass high-throughput screening of mouse disease models in general and mouse models of neurodegeneration in particular.

  4. Phylogenetic and chronological analysis of proteins causing Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and Huntington's diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bilal Hussain

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available It is evident that Neurodegenerative diseases (Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and Huntington's have many similarities at cellular and molecular level as they carry parallel mechanisms including protein aggregation and inclusion body formation caused by protein mis-folding. The main objective of this study was to have detailed insight on variation and resemblance among these proteins. One hundred and four protein sequences, both directly and indirectly involved in disease mechanism to perform phylogenetic analysis revealing insight on evolutionary relationship among these proteins, were selected. The percentage of replicate trees, in which the associated taxa clustered together in the bootstrap test, was 1000 replicates. Various statistical tests were performed for the confirmation of results e.g., Tajma's Neutrality Test showed D gt 6, nucleotide diversity π gt 0.6 and ps value as greater than 1. Phylogenetic analysis showed that the protein sequences of neurodegenerative diseases had high sequence similarity and identity to each other as depicted by the evolutionary tree. It showed the similar mechanism of evolving from each other and had similar mechanism of generating mis-folding leading towards symptoms of disease.

  5. Animal models of Huntington's disease for translation to the clinic: best practices.

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    Menalled, Liliana; Brunner, Daniela

    2014-09-15

    Mouse models of Huntington's disease (HD) recapitulate many aspects of the human disease. These genetically modified mice are powerful tools that are used not only to examine the pathogenesis of the disease, but also to assess the efficacy of potential new treatments. Disappointingly, in the past few years we have seen the success of potential therapies in animal studies, subsequently followed by failure in clinical trials. We discuss here a number of factors that influence the translatability of findings from the preclinical to the clinical realm. In particular, we discuss issues related to sample size, reporting of information regarding experimental protocols and mouse models, assignment to experimental groups, incorporation of cognitive measures for early phases of the disease, environmental enrichment, surrogate measures for survival, and the use of more than one HD mouse model. Although it is reasonable to question the appropriateness of the animal models used, we argue that it is more parsimonious to assume that improvements in experimental design and publication of negative results will lead to improved translatability to the clinic and insights about HD pathophysiology. © 2014 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society.

  6. Sulforaphane enhances proteasomal and autophagic activities in mice and is a potential therapeutic reagent for Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yanying; Hettinger, Casey L; Zhang, Dong; Rezvani, Khosrow; Wang, Xuejun; Wang, Hongmin

    2014-05-01

    The ubiquitin proteasome system (UPS) is impaired in Huntington's disease, a devastating neurodegenerative disorder. Sulforaphane, a naturally occurring compound, has been shown to stimulate UPS activity in cell cultures. To test whether sulforaphane enhances UPS function in vivo, we treated UPS function reporter mice ubiquitously expressing the green fluorescence protein (GFP) fused to a constitutive degradation signal that promotes its rapid degradation in the conditions of a healthy UPS. The modified GFP is termed GFP UPS reporter (GFPu). We found that both GFPu and ubiquitinated protein levels were significantly reduced and the three peptidase activities of the proteasome were increased in the brain and peripheral tissues of the mice. Interestingly, sulforaphane treatment also enhanced autophagy activity in the brain and the liver. To further examine whether sulforaphane promotes mutant huntingtin (mHtt) degradation, we treated Huntington's disease cells with sulforaphane and found that sulforaphane not only enhanced mHtt degradation but also reduced mHtt cytotoxicity. Sulforaphane-mediated mHtt degradation was mainly through the UPS pathway as the presence of a proteasome inhibitor abolished this effect. Taken together, these data indicate that sulforaphane activates protein degradation machineries in both the brain and peripheral tissues and may be a therapeutic reagent for Huntington's disease and other intractable disorders. Accumulation of mutant huntingtin (mHtt) protein causes Huntington's disease (HD). Sulforaphane (SFN), a naturally occurring compound, increased proteasome and autophagy activities in vivo and enhanced mHtt turnover and cell survival in HD cell models. SFN-mediated mHtt degradation is mainly through the proteasome pathway. These data suggest that SFN can be a therapeutic reagent for treating HD and other intractable disorders. © 2014 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  7. Structure and Dynamics of RNA Repeat Expansions That Cause Huntington's Disease and Myotonic Dystrophy Type 1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Jonathan L; VanEtten, Damian M; Fountain, Matthew A; Yildirim, Ilyas; Disney, Matthew D

    2017-07-11

    RNA repeat expansions cause a host of incurable, genetically defined diseases. The most common class of RNA repeats consists of trinucleotide repeats. These long, repeating transcripts fold into hairpins containing 1 × 1 internal loops that can mediate disease via a variety of mechanism(s) in which RNA is the central player. Two of these disorders are Huntington's disease and myotonic dystrophy type 1, which are caused by r(CAG) and r(CUG) repeats, respectively. We report the structures of two RNA constructs containing three copies of a r(CAG) [r(3×CAG)] or r(CUG) [r(3×CUG)] motif that were modeled with nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy and simulated annealing with restrained molecular dynamics. The 1 × 1 internal loops of r(3×CAG) are stabilized by one-hydrogen bond (cis Watson-Crick/Watson-Crick) AA pairs, while those of r(3×CUG) prefer one- or two-hydrogen bond (cis Watson-Crick/Watson-Crick) UU pairs. Assigned chemical shifts for the residues depended on the identity of neighbors or next nearest neighbors. Additional insights into the dynamics of these RNA constructs were gained by molecular dynamics simulations and a discrete path sampling method. Results indicate that the global structures of the RNA are A-form and that the loop regions are dynamic. The results will be useful for understanding the dynamic trajectory of these RNA repeats but also may aid in the development of therapeutics.

  8. The psychological impact of predictive genetic testing for Huntington's disease: a systematic review of the literature.

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    Crozier, S; Robertson, N; Dale, M

    2015-02-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a neurodegenerative genetic condition for which a predictive genetic test by mutation analysis has been available since 1993. However, whilst revealing the future presence of the disease, testing may have an adverse psychological impact given that the disease is progressive, incurable and ultimately fatal. This review seeks to systematically explore the psychological impact of genetic testing for individuals undergoing pre-symptomatic mutation analysis. Three databases (Medline, PsycInfo and Scopus) were interrogated for studies utilising standardised measures to assess psychological impact following predictive genetic testing for HD. From 100 papers initially identified, eight articles were eligible for inclusion. Psychological impact of predictive genetic testing was not found to be associated with test result. No detrimental effect of predictive genetic testing on non-carriers was found, although the process was not found to be psychologically neutral. Fluctuation in levels of distress was found over time for carriers and non-carriers alike. Methodological weaknesses of published literature were identified, notably the needs of individuals not requesting genetic testing, as well as inadequate support for individuals registering elevated distress and declining post-test follow-up. Further assessment of these vulnerable individuals is warranted to establish the extent and type of future psychological support.

  9. 8OHdG is not a biomarker for Huntington disease state or progression

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warner, John; Leavitt, Blair R.; Tabrizi, Sarah J.; Roos, Raymund A.C.; Durr, Alexandra; Becker, Chris; Sampaio, Cristina; Tobin, Allan J.; Schulman, Howard

    2013-01-01

    Objective: To evaluate plasma 8-hydroxy-deoxy-guanosine (8OHdG) levels as a potential biomarker of premanifest and early Huntington disease (HD). Methods: Personnel from 2 independent laboratories quantified 8OHdG in blinded longitudinal plasma samples taken 24 months apart from 160 TRACK-HD participants, as well as samples containing control plasma with added (“spiked”) 8OHdG. One laboratory used a liquid chromatography–electrochemical array (LCECA) assay, and the other used liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry (LCMS). Results: The LCMS assay was more accurate than the LCECA assay for measurements of “spiked” 8OHdG levels in plasma. Neither assay demonstrated cross-sectional differences in plasma 8OHdG among controls, premanifest HD, and early symptomatic HD. Similarly, neither assay showed longitudinal changes in any disease group over 24 months. Conclusions: Plasma concentration of 8OHdG is not a biomarker of disease state or progression in HD. We recommend that future putative biomarker studies use blinded sample analysis, standard curves, independent analytical methods, and strict quality control of sample collection and storage. PMID:23616162

  10. Video game play (Dance Dance Revolution) as a potential exercise therapy in Huntington's disease: a controlled clinical trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kloos, Anne D; Fritz, Nora E; Kostyk, Sandra K; Young, Gregory S; Kegelmeyer, Deb A

    2013-11-01

    To investigate the feasibility, acceptability, and safety of a supervised video game exercise program administered via Dance Dance Revolution in individuals with Huntington's disease. A cross-over, controlled, single-blinded, six-week trial. Home-based. Eighteen ambulatory individuals with Huntington's disease (seven male, mean age 50.7 SD 14.7). Participants played the Dance Dance Revolution game with supervision and the handheld game without supervision for 45 minutes, two days per week for six weeks. Game play performance and adherence, participant perceptions of the game, safety (vital signs, adverse health changes), spatiotemporal gait measures, Four-Square Step Test, Tinetti Mobility Test, Activities-Specific Balance Confidence Scale, and World Health Organization Quality of Life - Bref, before and after each intervention. Most participants improved on game play, enjoyed playing the game, and wanted to continue playing after study completion. After playing Dance Dance Revolution, participants showed significant reductions in double support percentage (adjusted mean difference (95% confidence intervals): -2.54% (-4.75, -0.34) for forward walking and -4.18 (-6.89, -0.48) for backward walking) and those with less severe motor symptoms had reductions in heel-to-heel base of support during forward walking. The remaining measures were not significantly impacted by the intervention. Dance Dance Revolution appears to be a feasible, motivating, and safe exercise intervention for individuals with Huntington's disease.